If Wurrunna Had Seen The Mardi Gras

by Michele Bannister

We met the swanmay brothers in Sydney, late on an autumn Saturday,
their feathers fluffed as flannel-flowers on the hillsides,
hair black as crows' gifts;
all soaked to the skin in the afternoon's thunderstorm,
makeup running, red-ringed on each eye, blood-crimson in lipstick.

One's plume-shake left a star-trail of glitter, caught in the surface tension,
sprayed the passers-by with droplets, and gone:
off down the slicked footpath, running —
their laughter

mournful, in the echo, as birds call in flight.

Michele Bannister calls the Pacific Rim home; questing for the light of unknown worlds has taken her to live in four countries and counting. Her poetry has appeared in Strange Horizons, where "Loki, Dynamicist" was voted third in their 2012 Readers' Poll, in Ideomancer, Stone Telling, and other venues, and in the Here, We Cross anthology (Stone Bird Press, 2012).

Michele says, "My favourite fruit is the mango. They're unabashedly straightforward: golden sun in a skin half the size of one's head, melt-in-the-mouth texture, and stickiness everywhere afterwards."

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