Bundeena National Park, New South Wales
Morning mist. Among the trees
the deer congregate, their legs
like so many snapping branches.
Rutting season: stags crowned
with the impossible weight
of antlers. They lower their heads
and celebrate their maleness;
they usher in death with each clash
and lock and twist. Stag and doe
in the grip of life, coarse topcoat
blending in with soft undercoat: the days
filled and spent. Yet another in the making.