It is time for the wisteria,
to send her sweetness into the warming air.
Sun rays are gently descending,
Rebirthing the dormant soil.
Playgrounds, parks, and backyards,
are once again filling.
Children, joggers, and dogs.
Cyclists are speeding to work.
Couples holding hands, plagarising that romantic walk at dusk.
As winter closes her door,
And the new season begins,
Moods lift and conversations shift.
Smiles erupt for September is here.
Yet, not all is well for a Melbourne spring.
These streets with blossom filling,
And the pungent fresh of newly mowed grass,
Forewarn a coming danger.
Tis the season of the magpie!
No, I don’t mean that scrawny football team,
The 18 to deride and despise.
That team of bogans,
The belly aching black and white of Collingwood.
I mean that Luftwaffe of birds,
Patrolling the suburban sky.
Waiting to swoop on innocence below.
Like the crack of a rifle which follows the bullet,
There is no warning for victims of the magpie.
The first known sign is the strike to the head,
And only thereafter, the woosh of wings soaring past.
Sirens sound, screams are heard.
It’s too late.
Another child, another cyclist has been hit.
Bleeding, scratched, afraid,
Resembling the Collingwood fan club.
The tropics have beaches and crocodiles to share.
The surf is a blood bath for surfers and sharks.
The bush floor is a game of hide and seek for strolling walkers and venomous snakes.
But from the sky, comes our most aboding fore.
Land, sea, and air, there is no escape.
Australia is made to scare.
Touch the water.
Tip toe on land.
Reach your hand inside that dark crack.
Duck, cover, put that helmet on.
It’s the magpie,
That makes us cower.
It’s happy laugh which signals spring.
The sirenic call, that ironic laugh.
How beautiful we say,
Final words for those for whom it’s too late to take cover.