BLUE HILLS 32

Layered mountains:
the nob of Ben Cruachan, sharper from the west,
blighted Mt Hump emergent for some distance.

Above Cheyne's Bridge the road swings up Hickey Creek
towards a gap; bared rock diagonal
hard under McMillan's Lookout.
A dirt track
skips a cutting, follows a shoulder to the point of the ridge
a few steps from the road; lichen on half-buried stone,
purple flowers in clefts.
Campfire ash in a small clearing,
Big Flat below, where the Macalister erodes edges of pasture;
cattle on the open ground, sheep dotted in rising scrub.

At Licola the settlement is boxed in for two more months,
its general store closed mid-week.
No sound or movement here, save a chain-saw
somewhere across the oval.

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