Photo of a setting sun, with a sky in deep oranges and yellows, with bushfire smoke visible in the foreground.
Photo of a setting sun, with a sky in deep oranges and yellows, with bushfire smoke visible in the foreground.
The view from our verandah. Photo by Matthew Hatton.

The grass is not just dry, it’s dead.

When we walk outside, it crunches under our feet. We feed the birds and leave out buckets of water, because there’s just nothing else for them to eat and drink. Our dam, which was designed to accomodate a large overspill, is completely dry. The ducks that nested on the tiny island in the middle, safe from foxes, have found new homes.

Once-lush gullys are now time bombs of brown fuel. Every day, there’s a new kangaroo dead on the side of the road, driven out of the bush by lack of food.

And then there is the air. The air so thick with smoke and heat, some days we can’t see our own fence. Ventolin and Seretide and a P2 mask aren’t enough to keep my asthma at bay. …

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