Chapter I in which she fails to stop the sun 1 The ocean has a lap of gold. The blood orange sun has a pulse despite the fall. 2 A cluster of tiny suns weighs the Pandanus. Flushed with Cointreau, they drop to the sand where we crack the back of a crab, pile shards, making a Burnt Sienna piece of art that the tide dismisses as ‘derivative’. 3 The tide is urgent and forgets a rock cod, leaves it to spotted chance. On its way out, it strips an ocean bed that’s ribbed and red as the desert seen from the air. 4 A Brahminy Kite circles, circles tighter, drops for something salty, invisible to those who merely wish to fly. 5 On the deck of a ship just up from Broome we watched the eclipse of the moon: old blood, rotted veins, a sick terror. My mother, who died a month later with no warning except for this, wasn’t fazed by the sun filling the moon, didn’t agree it felt wrong and signed the release form. 6 With my mother out of the way, death has a claim. It leans closer. It threatens a whole sun before too long. 7 Then, just to ruin the sunset, a four-wheel-drive gouges the beach, pumping music that no-one should waste their life on, blowing dirty diesel across my chances. 8 And before you can turn around, the sun melts, the day bleeds, the sea is up to its neck in it. 9 We are drenched in colour, drunk in a peppered red. We end our days exhausting pastels, wearing the sky. Remade as art, we no longer need to fly.