Sun and Wind in the Western Districts
26 September 2006

Victoria's Western Districts (Corgangamite, Wannon) are exceptionally beautiful, as we saw, sweeping late in the twilight to stay at Lake Bolac, half way between Ballaarat and Hamilton, with fields of young wheat and bright, huge flocks of sheep with new spring lambs, all looking wonderful after rain.

It is also a place of great winds. Nell, of the Lake Bolac Motel, told us that after a tornado in January, one wheat silo was found missing from the sales yard — eventually found in a paddock 10 km away.

It was Ev's day with the camera, and I found myself in the cold morning staying inside the car while she made a foray to photograph the Grampians in the distance. And found myself in a whirl of sensory inputs not recordable on the camera, scarcely explicable in writing, as the wind whipped around the car and across the paddocks.

So this is what I reported to Ev when she got back in the car:

I sit in the car warmed by the sun
Immune from the cold wind
Except for its buffets and screech.

Outside, roadside grasses jerk and jump
Dry tussocks blow over.

A wire fence russet rusted barbed top
Leads to a field of young wheat
A sea of bending green blowing white.

Away beyond, a streak of yellow rape
A rim of gums,
A sky blown clear empty dry.

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