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Poem Title:  Native-Born

Poem Category:  Nature Poems

Poet:  Eve Maria Langley

Poet Biography: 
Eve Maria Langley (1904-1974) was an Australian Poet

In a white gully among fungus red where serpent logs lay hissing at the air, I found a kangaroo. Tall dewy,dead, So like a woman, she lay silent there. Her ivory hands, black-nailed, crossed on her breast her skin of sun and moon hues, fallen cold her brown eyes lay like rivers come to rest and death had made her black mouth harsh and old beside her in the ashes I sat deep and mourned for her, but had no native song to flatter death, while down the ploughlands steep dark young Camelli whistled loud and long, 'Love, liberty and Italy are all.' Broad golden was his breast against the sun I saw his wattle whip rise high and fall Across the slim mare's flanks, and one by one she drew the furrows after her as he Flapped like a gull behind her, climbing high chanting his oaths and lashing soundingly, While from the mare came once a blowing sigh. The dew upon the kangaroo's white side had melted. Time was whirling high around, Like the thin woomera, and from heaven wide He, the bull-roarer, made continuous sound Incarnate lay my country by my hand: Her long hot days, bushfires, and speaking rains Her mornings of opal and the copper band of smoke around the sunlight on the plains. Globed in fire-bodies the meat- ants ran to taste her flesh and linked us as we lay, Forever australian, listening to a man from careless Italy, swearing at our day. When golden-lipped, the eagle-hawks came down Hissing and whistling to eat of lovely her and the blowflies with their shields of purple brown Plied hatching to and fro across her fur, I burnt her with the logs, and stood all day among the ashes, pressing home the flame till woman, logs and dreams were scorched away and native with the night, that land from whence they came.
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