Genevieve Osborne / Poetry


Platycercus elegans

A bushfire has let its embers fall
onto your back
they cling there still         red and black
but when the light is slanting
low on each feather of your stretched out wing
there shines a narrow rim of green         the bush
begins again and grows in flight

your breast curves smooth as blood
and on your cheek beneath each eye you hold
a patch of powdered blue
in case         towards the ending of your days
you must occupy a smaller space
and deep in the hollow of an enclosing trunk
that patch of ice clear sky will burn

and you will soar again and dive and twist away
to leave only that pure note         that cracks
a clear morning between mountain trees.

© Genevieve Osborne.

‘Crimson Rosella’ received Highly Commended in the Inverawe Nature Poetry Prize 2008.

Photo by Australian photographer Greg Oakley.

Photo by Australian photographer Greg Oakley.

Thank you Greg Oakley for allowing me to use of your photograph. You can check out Greg’s stunning photographs of birds at

4 thoughts on “CRIMSON ROSELLA

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