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Melancholy in a City of Extreme Weather

Martha Landman

three days of spring in the middle of winter,
Adelaide is bone-chilled July again.
the backyard, mad with winter rain, breaks out
in murderous dance between Knife-leaf Wattle,
the Moosewood Maple and White Orchid trees,
fat drops fuelled by horizontal south-pole winds
become a cacophony of cymbals on the roof.
slat around the corners, shake the house
to remind you of the tropical north
Queensland coast you left behind.
intermittent silence, brilliant skies,
fantails and sparrows rummage in the sudden sun.
You dash for the tram before clouds
move in again above the sodden streets.
The wind chills your cheeks crimson,
rips the clothes from your frame.
Soon the horizon will be a moth-grey shawl again.