A Quarterly Journal of Contemporary English Language Haibun
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March 2009, vol 5 no 1

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Barbara Strang

The Visitant

We park the car on the edge of the high, twisting road and join others walking silently, purposefully up the hill. It is still daylight; there is a crowd of all ages and types, at the top. Some men have climbed the wooden poles of the trig point. The atmosphere is patient, religious even.

Bush obscures the horizon, and above that there's the usual ruff of cloud; my son says there's no point in waiting. We push past the people and cars still coming up the narrow road. Driving home along the Western Motorway we see groups of people standing, gazing towards the sunset.

It's quite dark by the time we get home to Avondale. Deflated, we park the car in its usual possie behind the hedge, get out. There she is, above the houses and the hedge, above the huge street tree: the visitor from outer space, streaming across the zenith. So long her gauzy train.

comet watching
you meet the neighbour
for the first time

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