from “Travelling”

B. R. Dionysius

 

(i)

 

He sees concrete pylons set like giants’ bones

in Wagners’ yard as the train glides forward.

 

These carboniferous fossils will be transplanted

into flyovers and urban bypasses, strengthening

 

the new body’s industrial backbone. Perhaps a

coal port terminal to cough up the country’s lungs.

 

Peeling paint bulges, green cysts dot sound

barriers where teenage identity has been deleted.

 

Where there should be striped marsh frogs

are megafauna effigies of striped marsh frogs

 

clinging to a bus shelter’s wet mass. The tips

of their fingers magnified as defibrillator pads.

 

Orangemen repair railway bridges, their hands

explain how this is done in a secret sign language

 

reserved for the hard hat tribe. Flattened,

nineteenth century brickwork is smothered

 

by cement’s grey butter. Iron will outlive most

of us. Stenciled honeyeaters perch on a rock cutting.

 

B. R. Dionysius was founding Director of the Queensland Poetry Festival. His poetry has been widely published in literary journals, anthologies, newspapers and online. His eighth poetry collection, Weranga was released in 2013. He lives in Riverhills, Brisbane.

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