Tongues of flame licked,
Twisted and swam
Among driftwood and husk
Crushed cans lie by boots and barefeet alike,
Hunting dogs snuffle the undergrowth, fur matted in boar blood.
Torn, tired and scarred hands rest between scuffed knees
A brief respite, for all attending will awake before dawn
Cane, cattle, dirt and toil is in my DNA
As a child, legs brown in dust, littered with scabs - legacy of a farming childhood.
I'd watch the fire-bug sparks drift toward the soft evening sky, adorned in cold unreachable jewels,
**** destroyed a years worth of crops,
Price of fertilizer was increasing
The price of sugar plummeted
Underneath the lightheartrd camaraderie and swapping stories of pigging,
These men were terrified,
Losing hope and will,
And I knew,
I knew, that this life would not be mine.
On the farm it was common to spend a Friday night with locals around a bonfire. This is an ode to children of farmers who grew up watching and living the realities of farm- life. Farmer suicide is something that can't be dismissed.