tectonic anomalies by Dean English


five December two16—
the PM key stops turning—


prepardernin Hindsight.
tv cameras from helicopters,
army supplies. the sluicing rains
have closed
the only functioning road.


located where I
work, a landfill
on a plateau, our store
of clothing, blankets,
was busted into
(by my landlord,
in fact, in his 4 x 4,
to snap the chain off
padlocks at the entrance,
and through the broken
gates the undressed
evacuated backpackers
that night the 7.8
charged bull-bar like
from Waiau on
through Culverden
through gears of three dimensions
beneath the white bull moon,
screeching bull, roaring Kingswood
stationwagon, 12.02 a.m.,
the sparsely attired people
fleeing the sea-loud shore
this almost Summer night,
you will picture accurately
tiptoeing in their cellphone
torch lights over shards of
shattered crockery and sets
of glasses, mistletoe-remembered,
frosted, shot-sized tumblers
and shattered castle stacks
of crystal from estates, four
or five different languages,
kicking through the Humpty
Celestine of Cookery & Maps,
books like fish expressed,
flying fish, leaping off the shelves
gasping on their back, packing
in together, in jolting aftershocks
in milky darkness, fashion
-defaulting travellers now
dressed in unmatched combos.
in brassiere and jocks, the whole town
had run out shaking, their genetics,
underneath their arms & at their side
in unicorn and aeroplane pyjamas,
moonlit valley dust obscuring November
constellations, the sea withdrawing
indecisive loud, the Land, gravel
in a tin can, podocarp snapped like toothpicks,
and the pink! pink! sound
underneath the mountains
as the granite pins let go.


as this section lifted, one man,
at altitude, like a bronco rider, in the hut
saddled the spur, rising, said he took it
on all fours, and waited uncertain of worst
scenario waiting below,
climbed at dawn down to the fairly okay.

Originally posted on http://poetry.org.nz/dean-english/tectonic-anomalies/


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