WHEN I am gone,
Bury me not in dusty claims with my forebears,
In dry-rot graveyard, by tin-roof church and dunny.
Give me not to the sea, for wrasse-filled rockpool’s swallow.
Don’t leave my ashes high, escarpment winds to hollow.
Just fold me up,
Where weathered rock, by dry stone wall
Has made a deeper place,
Where hawthorn hedgerow
Has hidden me a ditch.
A place in green-grass valley,
That would be my wish.
My soul has a footprint
In Poets’ Land,
In rain-sluiced loam,
On flatbed stone,
Where shepherd, waller, and my tear-stained boy
Can call me home.
© Michael Burge, all rights reserved.