General Poetry posted May 26, 2013

This work has reached the exceptional level
Mining for opals in Australia.

The Fire Opal

by Aussie

Fire above - fire below
Mother Earth surrenders her fire
Millions of years - hidden glow
A myriad of colors from the mire.

Way out west - heat haze
Men dig for opal below ground
Families live in air-cooled maze
White-washed walls make no sound.

Hot heavy work -chipping away
Miners seek their fortune
Fire opals, cut and polished for display
Hard-bitten, sunburnt men - sing their tune.

Millions of dollars beneath the earth
Colors of rainbow lay hidden deep
Chipping away for all their worth
These miners slave without sleep.

Rewards are many - opal fire
One opal, perhaps the black?
Elusive and rare from the mire
Fabulous opals - Great Outback.


Photo: Australian fire opal in raw form. Out west where the temperature can reach 150F on the ground - families live below in air-conditioned homes with every amenity. The ground in the Great Outback (aboriginal country, sparse and inhospitable) looks like a gopher has been at work - the homes of the miners look like ancient mud huts painted white against the glare of the sun. This hut is the entry to the maze of tunnels where the families live, sleeping in the cool of the earth. It would be impossible to live above ground. I love opals, especially the fire opal. The main mining area - called Andamooka. The other area in on the New South Wales border - called Lightning Ridge...that's another story I might work on. Enjoy!
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