Poet Chris Wallace-Crabbe set his writing class to describe water. The source of life, isn’t it everything earthly? Maybe its colour is, really, brown. Clear as day, for most of us, it is associated with blue-type hues like azure, the force of evaporation and precipitation. Though can long words describe vapour and droplets? Movement is a common recourse, how water crinkled and green descends from gullies into spearmint reservoirs. Wallace-Crabbe offered no criteria other than language itself. January, for example, suggests flow and relief, at least to a true-blue Australian. But which words make us new and slake our thirst?