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On a day when promises have been broken

I think of the waterfall

that flowed through things once

there was less talk and the world could

paint over any deep urgency

in quiet harmonies

I remember the way

the mountains buffed against the sky

clouds pressing down

on the line of ragged trees

the orange grasses of many paddocks


fences sewn in with amber thread

Today the sky is a deceitful

powder blue

and I am imprisoned

by city shapes

and their titanium lies

but the past has its own colours:

I recall especially the map

of a summer

evening, the sun slipping vivid as phlox

between the flat brown

hill and the creamy waters

of the river, all caught in a stem-

snapped second on my

old polaroid camera,

the firm imprint of kindness

in the light

grip of your hand

Jane Frank’s latest chapbook is Wide River (Calanthe Press, 2020). Her poems have appeared most recently in Westerly, Plumwood Mountain, StylusLit, Shearsman, Burrow, Meridian, Social Alternatives, Grieve vol 9 (Hunter Writers Centre, 2021), Not Very Quiet: The Anthology (Recent Work Press, 2021), Poetry for the Planet (Litoria Press, 2021) and The Incompleteness Book II (Recent Work Press, 2021). She was recently shortlisted for both The Newcastle Poetry Prize 2021 and Takahe’s Monica Taylor Poetry Prize 2021. In March 2021, Jane was a Feature Poet at StAnza International Poetry Festival (St. Andrews, Scotland). Originally from the Fraser Coast region, Jane now lives in Brisbane and teaches in Humanities at Griffith University. Read more of her work at and

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