Leaving for the Myanmar jungle,
her tender love brushes my cheek,
her ineffable softness of skin
is as rare as musked gazelles.
‘You’re not hopeless as a Daddy,’ she says,
her delicate remark floating in the air,
a dragon-fly in slow motion,
‘I’m hopeless at touching my toes,’ I retort,
swallowing my overworked destiny.

So much pain, all the way back to the cot.
Yet my daughter has spoken, after eleven years,
my trauma-childhood,
nailed in perpetual shock, is redeemed.

She is walking backwards now
up the hill, waving to me,
as if directing a plane to land.
Then she is gone.

Momentarily forsaken,
more pervasively, alone.
Across the bereaved, green haze of Myocum fields,
I am spreadeagled on bedrock,
bedrock of grief
and the purity
of grief.


Myocum, Australia 2016