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All I Ever Wanted

Page 4

Barry Revill

And then, around the bend in the creek it started to rise up a bit and I could see where a waterfall would come rushing down after heavy rain, and I could see little sticks, and some big ones too that had been caught in the lower branches of a tree when the water had risen up. And I told Mrs Stewart all about this. And Mrs Stewart asked me to tell her some more about the bush because she told me she had never seen it the way I had seen it.

So I told her about a billabong I had seen, and there were some water birds because it was a big billabong, and there was this big pelican, and he sort of sat there like he owned the place, and when he took off you thought he was going to take half the billabong with him he made so much of a racket with his flapping wings and all that stuff. And there were little coots whose heads went backwards and forwards as they went through the water and there were some ibis as well with their long beaks. And right up high in the trees were some cockatoos, because they also were there for the water, and also to watch out for someone who might want to stuff the billabong into their tucker bag and run away with it. That’s my little joke.

And I told Mrs Stewart how the sun would reflect on the water and how, late in the day, the bush would start to get tired, it would slow down, it had done its job for the day. The shadows would creep down the creek and over the rocks and down through all the cracks and over the dead leaves. Softly now, quietly now, the bush is going to sleep. No noise, no yelling, no nasty people, just quiet, just peace, that is all, just peace. A special peace for people like me. That is all I want, that is all I have ever wanted, just peace.

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