Wind chimes beat a frantic fractured metal sound, the music lost, against the noise of strained and flapping sun sails. Views to the south had been reduced to 10 meters from the usual 6 Nautical Miles. With a sudden darkening of rain clouds and a drop in temperature from 40 to 22 o C the southerly had arrived. It was early. It was always early. She had told him it would be early. Now all she could do was shut her fear at the thrashing palm trees and the bent branches of the Lilly Pilly as it actively invaded the much older avocado tree.
“This is fucked!” Damian said from the front seat. His hands gripped the wheel tightly and his muscles flexed. He had tattoos all the way up his arms with symbols from New Zealand. Out the front window of the car the headlights reflected off a thick wall of fog. You could only see the road for a car length then it disappeared and there was condensation all over the windows. “Remind me again, what’s so special about the Otways?” Mum didn’t answer; it must have been a rhetorical question. I poked the condensation on the window with my finger. It felt cold and wet.
When the Great Crabs come frothing from the ocean- angry and spitting - it’s Meeko who leaps upon them, shoving them into the rusted tin bucket.
He’s young though. Unpractised.
Where are all the warhorses?
The streets look so empty,
The tar is turning cold.
In sunglasses, even at night
If not she apparently fainted
Since her paint was too bright
In the year of Our Lord, 1539, or thereabouts, in a small town in the centre of France, or thereabouts, three middle-aged men sat together in the corner of a tavern, in silence. They were Piers L'Hernault (more secular than religious), Onfroi Parsley (more religious than secular), and Gosse Barnard (majoritarian) – three of the twelve town councillors. When their council meeting began that morning, their town was Champs des Navets (Turnip Fields); controversially, when it ended, Saint Luc de la Chemise.
Australian literary powerhouse Sofie Laguna won the Miles Franklin Award for her 2015 novel The Eye of the Sheep. She has returned with a new book; The Choke. Set in rural Victoria, we meet Justine, the main character and narrator. She’s 10 years old, lives with her grandfather, rarely bathes and eats a lot of eggs (more on that later).