Sulphur-Crested Cockatoos

The screeching cockatoos in hundreds swoop,
avenging angels at the trump of doom,
with fanned white wings, backlit like skeins of lace;
a wheeling flock above the river’s course.

Their sulphur crests on fire against the sun;
unsettled, as they throng round undrowned trees,
on whose gaunt limbs they shift, like candle flames
at mumbled evensong, in muted tones.

Dusk softly fades in blushes, rose and pink,
and squabbles soon subside to peacefulness.
All now is silent on the billabong,
but tiny splashes heard as bell frogs leap.

Small sparkling gems adorn the velvet dome,
attendant on the silent, rising moon.

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