Impressions of Gold
old ladles abandoned along with the dreams.
Rusty ladles of promise,
Receptacles of molten metal,
Hardened by furious determination,
To strike unimagined wealth.
From the creek bed of Reedy Creek,
In this little valley of dreams.
Its quartz gravel gleaming,
with the promise of alluvial gold.
This place was not called ‘Eldorado’,
for ‘no reason’ they say.
Our forebears dreams, here, solid,
in molten metal,
cooling the fury of endeavour,
Men striving for dreams and fortunes.
Now rubble, of twisted corrugated sheets
and iron bars,
clothe the open cut hole,
Now swallowed by watery blackness
and Dionysian shadows.
Men’s dreams of finding ‘gold,’
scattered and cooled by time.
Something to take home to his family,
Something to change life’s fortune,
Something he cannot in the alchemist pot attain.
the gleaming quartz gravel,
now a path snaking down to the blackness.
Tempting the walker between dreams.
The visitor to take a journey,
to emptiness and hollow dreams,
Where only buttercups,
yellow butterflies in summer,
and golden wattle in spring,
enliven the promise of gold.
—30 January 2018