Dogshead Road, running along the town's cemetery, takes its name from the fortesque variance in detail of the murder that litters its historically bitumen surface. Found in 1807, it was lost only a score of years later during the ant swarm of 1827. Smelling horrifically of an impending, yet never quite there rain, the crunch underfoot of tyres rolling over left many residents packing up their rags and britches.
Between Rydalmere and Ermington, the road is said to carry with it a chthonic charge, of underworld spirits and messages, looking to seek refuge in the waters and region of what is today known as Eric Primrose Reserve. Before the dusk settles for the night, if you prick your ears for it, you'll be able to hear the warbled voices making their way from Dogshead toward the waters.
The little one stops to shut the gate
Phenomena of such undiscoverable nature isn't quite a result of anoxia to the brain, but of wearing noise-cancelling headphones for too long. In the winter months, the inner ear canal whirrs a little more fervently to keep the hammer and tongs inside your head from wearing out through frostbite and warding off the cold shoulders and silent treatment of those perceptively in the wrong.
Somewhere on a Tuesday of April 1833, a still remaining local resident, Ryall Oppenheimer, stumbles upon an ant hill in the shape of a consensus. Collecting the nest, he boils down the insects in an Erlenmeyer flask. Using other such ingredients as bay leaves and ginger, Oppenheimer is able to blend a new hybrid of narcotic and toxic vomit.
Taking this new lipstick spit and spraying it on the nests, Oppenheimer single-handedly drives out the many-fold ant colonies of the area.
Champion for a week, his memory and legacy find themselves at odds with the subsequent murder spree, the blood of many victims of which lines the cracks of the road.
Raging against the dying light, one of his final words was to lay the blame of his rampage on inhaling too much of the anti-ant fluid.
Written on Tuesday, 17 August 2010