by Judith Wright
In the vine-shadows on the veranda;
under the yellow leaves, in the cooling sun,
sit two sisters. Their slow voices run
like little winter creeks, dwindled by frost and wind,
and the square of sunlight moves on the veranda.
They remember the gay young men on their tall horses
who came courting; the dancing and the smells of leather
and wine, the girls whispering by the fire together;
even their dolls and ponies, all they have left behind
moves in the yellow shadows on the veranda.
Thinking of their lives apart and the men they married
thinking of the marriage-bed and the birth of their first
they look down smiling. “My life was wide and wild,
and who can know my heart? There in that golden jungle
I walk alone,” say the old sisters on the veranda.