November, 1892

They opened up with carbines
As we pulled our pack animals
Across the vertical scree

And Matty Fellows was taken
In that first volley while Foulkes
Who never prayed
Lost his mule and just stood
Flapping at the bullets
Until his jaw was shot away

The rest of us
Tumbled down the slope
Dragging what we could
In full retreat

Until we reached
The river crossing
From the previous day

Where we settled overnight
Breathless

Amongst smooth boulders
Shaped like baby elephants

To wait and see

When it got cold
0lafson snuggled up to me
For warmth
And when he unbuttoned me
From behind

It was you I imagined