Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Fearing The Plague

Thom writes:
"Each week, I post three words. You write something using the words.

Then come back and post a link to the contribution with Mr. Linky (but please, link to the exact post, not your blog, by clicking on the exact post title and paste it to Mr. Linky below). As always, there's no hard-and-fast rule that you have to post on Wednesday."

This week the words are:
Brutal; Sullen; Trust

To connect with the site, *click here*

Wiki writes: "The Outback is the vast, remote, arid area of Australia, term colloquially can refer to any lands outside the main urban areas. The term "the outback" is generally used to refer to locations that are comparatively more remote than those areas named "the bush".

"The outback is home to a diverse set of animal species, such as the kangaroo, emu and dingo. The Dingo Fence was built to restrict dingo movements into agricultural areas towards the south east of the continent. The marginally fertile parts are primarily utilised as rangelands and have been traditionally used for sheep or cattle grazing, on cattle stations which are leased from the Federal Government. While small areas of the outback consist of clay soils the majority has exceedingly infertile palaeosols. Riversleigh, in Queensland, is one of Australia's most renowned fossil sites and was recorded as a World Heritage site in 1994. The 100 km2 (39 sq mi) area contains fossil remains of ancient mammals, birds and reptiles of Oligocene and Miocene age."

Fearing The Plague

Let's not be brutal,
tearing skin away to bleed
across the dry sand
of the far outback
nor find the sullen dirty
sky above our shame.
Instead we shall trust
this fence to keep the snaggle
toothed vermin away.

January 11, 2012 4:29 AM


  1. Hopefully the fence is sturdy, eh?

  2. Nice history to know about the outback. Is the fence really successful, the vermin seem to be real survivors.

  3. thank you for the information before your poem. I guess you'd have to have a great fence.

  4. The fence is in the main successful though not perfect. In some areas, feral camels wreck it. In others for many reason there are holes. There are inspection and maintenance crews that patrol the fence, so it is actively seen full length on a regular basis. The dingoes are apex predators and have been in Australia for at least 5000 years. Thus keeping dingoes out means that other pests are worse on the south side of the fence. The farmers resort to poison in the waterholes where the cattle do not use them.

  5. White Australia does not have a happy history of cohabiting with the natural owners of the land. Putting a dinner of sheep for the hungry native animals to salivate over clearly asked for trouble. Meanwhile rabbits, camels and wild buffalo together with a host of other introduced pests has resulted in this Eden becoming an example of what not to do. I haven't even mentioned the indigenous population whose land it was and were not citizens in their own country until 1968!

  6. It was Jared Diamond in his book Collapse who pointed me to the primary truth of Australia. For whatever reason, it is the most stable and oldest continuously exposed land on the planet. Its soils are ancient and depleted naturally due to this age and are not renewed as happens elsewhere on the planet with few exceptions. The ecosystems of Australia compensate in many areas but they lack "depth and resilience". Australia looks lush but is not. Aboriginal humans lived within Australian means but the immigrants have not.

    This leads to all sorts of trouble. It also has probably contributed along with isolation to the way evolution went in Australia, marsupials instead of mammals for example.

    The dingo is one of the immigrants, albeit an older one. Humans without dogs came to Australia a long, long time ago. Humans with dogs came to Australia maybe 5000 years ago.

  7. I enjoyed the introuction to the poem. Thank you for sharing.

  8. It takes a big fence to keep 'snaggle tooth vermin away'..human..and canine..Jae


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