GRAFTON BRIDGE, AUCKLAND



An antipodean-cum-Piranesi hybrid by-blow,
a Birfrost of despair
suturing together Auckland like a sawdust-spilling
pantomime horse groaning at its seams,
is a funny sort of pier into the underworld:
a place to pause and gauge the car-Acheron beside,
their hypnotic thrum;
the rank and row of marble and granite below,
overgrown, where the homeless bed down with the dead;
the disapproving row of volcanic cones
beyond the elegant balustrade and picture windows;
yet timelessly beautiful in its antic melancholy,
surviving against the odds like a rare snail in its shadow,
perfectly suited to purpose in its way,
arching through years and splendours,
a liminal shortcut between realities and beings
as the dazzling sun scatters the inscrutable universe
and you think back to the fading memory
of the last time joy battered your face

with her victorious wings.

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