Well above the boulder-lined mountain creek,
Its tangled profusion of vine and tree,
The spreading glory of the strangler fig,
The remnant cedar’s towering beauty,
In a place where the mountain steeply slopes,
Where the filtered sun casts a dappled light,
Where tall trees grow from the leaf-littered ground,
There stop and stand still in hushed delight.
Two young male lyre birds cavort and display,
Practising for some more urgent future time
Their dance, spread of tail and joy of song
With a beauty far beyond the power of rhyme.
Their tail is two curves of yellow and black,
Enclosing an inside of silver gossamer wisp,
As seemingly delicate and coloured
As dew-filled web or wind-blown sea mist.
This unfolding glory they arch over their back,
Graceful, delicate, curved, surprising long,
Then dancing a quick, little staccato bob
Pour from their throat a liquid miracle of song.
Mimicry of all the diverse forest sounds
In effortless beauty from their little throat pours-
Kookaburra’s laugh, whip bird’s soar and crack,
King parrot, rosella and many unknown more.
Hush! The vault is coloured blue, white and green,
There are ethereal slants of light,
Great supporting buttress columns of trees,
And a choir praising in unrestrained delight.
Walk quietly away from this pure moment
With feelings elevated and sublime,
A heart full of wonder and gratitude,
A sense of a glimpse into some great divine,
For on that on that leaf-littered mountainside
In effortless beauty these small birds raise,
Without tuition or much thumbed page,
A wondrous hymn of beauty and praise.