Fifty-something jazz musician, Jac, and 15-year-old schoolgirl, Gia Nghi, both witness a botched robbery at an outer suburban 7-Eleven. Their statements to the police however, reveal more about themselves than the crime.
The loan that built the house for me and the ex, wasn’t big enough to buy the paint or plant the garden, so I took a second job. For extra money. To put down roots.
Pig Face, Acacias, Native Fuchsias. Not that you’d know that to look at it now. Wind-blown rubbish and dandelion clocks, more like.
But nothing took, no water-wise plants, no family, no tree.
And she’d say: I never see you these days.
And I’d say: It’s only temporary. Til we get on our feet.
And then she was gone, along with the kids, leaving me alone with the desert and the Camels …
Sometimes, the wind off the desert makes it hard to swallow.
Over there’s where you get the bus to the city, and that way—nothing. Few kilometres north, the land crumbles to desert. It used to be under the sea or a lake or something. Before it dried up and went salty.
Sometimes, at night, I imagine the extinct animals in a sort of reverse Noah’s ark. Leaving 2 by 2, through a door in the back of the world.
Or the camel on the cigarette packet walking off in search of water.
Ghosts have trouble with water, my Gran says. I reckon Australia must be ghost paradise then. Because it’s so dry.