Observations From Isolation: Ch.5 – Tiered Waterfalls, Up In The Hills…

Observations From Isolation: Ch.5 – Tiered Waterfalls, Up In The Hills…


We get to the

Top of the Bitumen Hill

And I pull onto the side

To lock the front wheels and then

Kick it into four-high and we turn

Off the scrappy blacktop onto dirt and head

Up and east.


There are houses at first,

Decent size and structure tucked

Into the dense rainforest

But we leave them behind quickly and

It’s nothing but green and swaying ferns and


We wind the windows down and smell

The peat and the moisture coming up

Off the forest floor.


We catch glimpses of the

Ocean through the

Trees and the land falls away to our right

As we climb higher.


The road is fine, packed hard and almost

Pink gravel, running divots cut through in

Places from recent rain creating diagonal

Speed bumps. The truck

Shudders and bounces across them

And stabilises. I sip coffee

Carefully between bumps, quickly averting

My eyes from the road to tuck the

Cup back into its holder.


We find a spot, high up, to park,

Tucked against ferns and backed

Against a fallen log. We cross

The road, with the small stream running beneath

That then finds freedom on the other side

Through big concrete pipes that make you think

Of sewage, but the water is

Clear and clean and is colder than the air.

Adeline skips ahead on the

Slippery rock and we have to tell her to

Be careful but she doesn’t stop, just laughs

And keeps on skipping.


The rock tiers naturally, small steps

Downward, rivulets running and dropping

Then pooling before finding a gap

And gravity helps it along.


Birds call in the trees and there’s

No one about at all. You think

You hear a car somewhere further down one

Of the tracks but it turns out to be a lone,

Small, plane somewhere not too high above

Joyflighting over the emptiness of

It all.


Some parts are steep and you need

To find a way, a different way, off the

Track, somewhere easier to slide, to

Tumble, to step down to the next level

Where the water pools again, deeper this

Time under trees with dappled sun lighting

It in a way that makes the clear water gleam

Like nothing you’ve seen gleam before.


We race leaves down small runs to

See which will get there first. Mine

Always seem to end up caught under

Loose grass and Addy’s make it clear to the

Next pool.


We find the end, a proper drop to

Valley below, the view across Myocum

Towards Byron and the sea glittering in the

Middle distance. We sit

And eat mandarins and peanuts and sip

From the water bottle and find long grass

To make swords and we throw our fruit peel

Into the long scrub and sit and watch

The view.