5AM

Only a currawong dialing the neighbourhood

only the moon I heard ring off the glass mountains

morning thrown like a newspaper

over lawns riffled as oyster beds.

 

No car here starts simply, without a cigarette,

without grinding its teeth.

The world adjusts itself,

an actor readying before the lights come on.

 

The clatter of a runabout motor,

recognisable but detached from its source

winches upwards, a rickety scaffold of sound

balanced on the lake’s soft platform.

 

Someone on the early shift hurries for the bus;

that slender gesture of obedient acceptance,

fingers to ears, nothing more

than the retention of an earpiece.

Half Way Down the Stairs 2010