Flying over Alice Springs
we see vast stretches of earth
       – red brown
and occa­sio­nal­ly
a dash of green –
grass, bush or tree –
stub­born, reticent,
like mor­ning stubble.
The many-veins of the River Todd,
snake back to the day
we hag­gled over
a Made- in- China abo­ri­gi­nal pain­ting
at Melbourne’s flea mar­ket.

What we don’t see
are an entire people –
edu­ca­ted white,
and stir­red
like sugar into milk.


Published in Arriving Shortly (col­lec­tion of poems) Kolkata : Writers Workshop, 2011