Midsummer noon: and the timbered walls
start in the heat;
and the children sag listlessly over the desks,
with bloodless faces oozing sweat
sipped by the stinging flies.
Outside, the tall sun fades the shabby mallee
and drives the ants deep underground;
the stony driftsand shrivels
the drab, sparse plants;
there's not a cloud in all the sky to cast
a shadow on the tremulous plain.
Stirless the windmills; thirsty cattle, standing despondently about the empty tanks;
stamping and tossing their heads,
in torment of the flies from dawn to dark.