Rarely trodden paths are distinguished by the fact that you can have spider webs hanging from your face and your arms. The way to Forgotten Lake in St Clair National Park is evidently one such path. But could there possibly be anything more appropriate than spider webs on the path to this lake – aren’t these wonder works of insect-made web art the very signs of something that’s beginning to slide into a state of oblivion?
If, when I make some swimming movements in the lake, I am likewise falling into oblivion – Forgotten Polter? I get undressed and start to wade through the slimy shoreline in the direction of the lake centre. Hardly three steps away from the rim I notice something like a huge worm that is slipping away from my feet. Well, perhaps I will definitely not like to be forgotten – I’d prefer it the other way round, actually: that I will be able to forget one thing or another that emerges from the slime of my past and continues to have an impact in the relatively clear waters of my present.
Even less used is the path to Mount Hugel that rises right next to the Forgotten Lake. Climbing over tiny waterfalls and boulders I try to get to the peak, but I repeatedly reach a dead-end created by resinous-malty smelling bushes or am stopped in my tracks by sticky swamps. With mocking shrieks from their treetop thrones the birds comment on my every wrong move – the meanest tones are delivered by black budgerigars. Halfway through I turn back, also because in this dense blur I cannot quite see where I am setting foot – and I am not keen on rousing a dozing tiger snake, which visitors are warned about by posters at the park entrance, out its dream. In the perspective of the returner the ground appears distinctly different, the area seems alien to me. At a crossroads, I decide on the way that leads to the right side – but then, to the left, I see my shoe imprint on a piece of wallaby sh
First Publication: 18-4-2014