'Treecreeper' by Sarah Holland-Batt | States of Poetry Queensland - Series One

Bebop sparkplug spurred in withershins,
loop-de-loop interloper, he hop-steps
ravines of bark, shirking faultlines,
going solo, headstrong, scion of impatience,
juddering like the stalled engine
of prop-plane on tundra runway, skirting
and skimming up, peeling out,
reeling in spiral, spy, scout, prematurely
thrusting into the unknown, Magellan
running aground on an idea of home,
small caravel listing on lateen sails
then surging helical in staccato, rounding
each horizon in horror of what lies behind,
long a believer of earth-as-cylinder,
denier of his long scroll of crimes,
smiter of pseudoscorpions and mites,
he scours the lonely atolls under cover of snow,
dreaming of Cape Verde and the Canary Islands,
forewarned of the way death arrives, ahead of his time,
the age of discovery sinking out of sight
in the forest's surge and slide.

Sarah Holland-Batt