Daily Prompt: Home, Soil, Rain

Today’s Daily Prompt asked for free associations with the words
home, soil, rain.

My home has not burnt down in the last few weeks, but several homes in south-east Australia have been in the path of merciless bushfires, and now some people have nowhere to lay their heads in peace.

A large 40,000 hectare bush fire is burning in the Warrumbungle National Park. Fires have destroyed more than 30 homes in New South Wales. (FILE:AAP)

Photo:  A large 40,000 hectare bush fire is burning in the Warrumbungle National Park. Fires have destroyed more than 30 homes in New South Wales. (FILE:AAP)

The soil in my yard is dry and a large crack has appeared in the ground at the side of the house.  The lawn that grew in spring has died.  In open farmland and bushy forest, the long grassy stalks are thirsty brown fire fuel.

Cracked earth, My yard, Canberra

Cracked earth, My yard, Canberra

In 1908 Dorothea Mackellar published a poem about this country, which many of us think of in weeks like these.   It’s called My Country and is famous for its line ‘I love a sunburnt country’.  A couple of later stanzas are on my mind:

Core of my heart, my country!
Her pitiless blue sky,
When sick at heart around us,
We see the cattle die –

But then the grey clouds gather,
And we can bless again
The drumming of an army,
The steady soaking rain.

Core of my heart, my country!
Land of the Rainbow gold,
For flood and fire and famine,
She pays us back threefold –

Over the thirsty paddocks,
Watch, after many days,
The filmy veil of greenness
That thickens as we gaze…

Dickson Wetlands, Canberra

Dickson Wetlands, Canberra

Rain will come again.  It will fill the cracked earth, soften it and quench its thirst.  Rain (and firefighters) will douse the uncontained fires still burning as I write.

10 thoughts on “Daily Prompt: Home, Soil, Rain

    • I know some people who have been left homeless by local fires; it changed their lives and changed them. They’ve never been the same, even though they have a new home now. We all have a fire plan here, and I tell myself not to become attached to possessions that can burn to ash in seconds.

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  1. Last summer there was a big forest fire (Alt Empordà, Mediterranean Spain) not very far away from my home. My first reaction was horror. Six months later I am still suffering my second reaction: sadness. I am glad you are safe and I hope mother nature will flourish soon in our beloved landscapes.

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