January 4

When I was researching for a historical writing project in 2014, I learned that the migrant ship called the Sibayak was used to take Australians to war in the 1940s. This poem is inspired by one of their practice drills. It is also my first try at a sevenling.

Spots of red dancing in the breeze
Below, the swollen, shuddering sea
Bears hopeful young men to war

Standing in rows with swaying knees
Uncertain in virgin khaki green
They point at the sky and fire

Like blood, balloons splatter and fall


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