They’re digging at Sandringham, open cut,
the hunt for the lost Six Ten
that diverted from its accustomed route
and burrowed in the sand.
This morning from my cottage
on the edge of the Sandringham pit
I saw pantographs protruding,
spines of a fossilized dinosaur,
and now the spools on cranes are
grinding sure and slow, steel cables taut,
extracting the commuter carriages
with unexpected tenderness,
not to rend their couplings.
For thirteen years it’s traveled far below,
but today the sunlight’s harsh reality
will illuminate the Sandringham Six Ten.
In the photocopied forest,
where origami birds shed origami feathers,
where duplicates with papered eyes
riffle through the files of our dreaming,
where carbon copied life is rampant,
Rosalyn shows me a quick start guide
for human prototypes,
their care and feeding, how to keep them far
from wheels and fire,
and recirculant mechanics.
Our bonsai minds are caged and shaped,
replicas in miniature of something greater:
trains, the sky, and lightning.
Sutherland birds All Sutherland birds are flightless, the local council recommends
tiny holes in fences for the poor
creatures to hop
through, and we are strangers lost and roaming in a lonely place.
Riders within us direct our dreams,
we who imagine ourselves
untouched by the local weather,
and yet a storm is brewing
by the picture rail in the dining room
where the larks are pecking at the carpet,
and Docinha’s head is hidden inside
a fluffy philosophical cloud.
Three ghosts are in the hall. On the cable
internet outside, two currawongs are pecking,
but the mysteries of past and present,
of calendars, dates and numbers are best
left for numerical processors.
When time was thick and sweet and I couldn’t breathe,
when you wept and left me wondering,
when the blue of clouds and day was painted
on the land to resist the night’s temptations,
I could start six lines and finish them,
know what I’d just said and order wine.
We’re squeezed like toothpaste into wires,
an atmospheric phantom network
bouncing off the sea bed and the sky,
and if we don’t pay the bills:
discontinuities in reality.
They’re deep, best not to fall in.
I remember burning forests in the wind
when the air was thick as a roast chicken smoothie, when nature, lightning and amino acids
made single cells in starter packs,
ever changing, revisable. But now each heart is pizza sliced in four quaternions, one alone, the other three— an irresolvable triangle of love.