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Blueprint: Bramble Tce

1.
the last time I came here
            I didn’t need to break in
 
at some stage of cobbled history
the house was raised   with a staircase
                                    for a new spine
 
glass blue-bottle bricks
            fling light on the deck
            its midden of scraps
            crumbling under the laundry chute
                        its ottoman bereft of empire
 
under that staircase
            a two-way cupboard
the way in between drywall and vine
                        glass wool and fungal lace
 
the Hills Hoist a skeletal rotunda
            where bats dry out like lingerie
 
 
2.
tiny green tiles
  repeat   in the hallway
a tray of jade mochi
 
from the bedroom
fern-green cathedral glass       
                     a bulb burns
                     inside an avocado
 
     a crumpled pink doona
in the shape of a human body
 
       between rooms a window
                 opens like a toy theatre
           frames a tableau of decay
 
      a tower of pizza boxes
    by the corpse of a sofa
            its antique smell of bong water
 
the mattresses have bred since my last visit
 
            propped up against woodstove
                        a faded auction sign
       the blueprint of when
                                    this address breathed
 
I touch my finger
to the spot that marks here      
    rub away the mildew
               polish myself into the map
 
 
3.
I only slept here once
            upstairs    on the floor
           all the lamps dimmed
                         the room burnt
                cinnamon umber
 
the kitchen is shelved
            with chicken wire
            hutches cradling mismatched dishes
an empty cereal box
                        and a jar of deflated bath oil beads
 
             oven chips abandoned on the cooktop
                        like severed fingers
 
a map on the wall from 1995
            shows all the Brisbane I have lived since
 
      out the window
                the verandah begins to sway
 
 
4.
in the bathroom
       with its slippery-dip chute
   a red ironbark blooms in the tiles
            flame red on eucalypt green
               blue on bluer blue
           
     this mosaic outlives Pompeii
        sings vivid in the dust
 
I try the water
            a mirror’s extendable arm
 
 
5.
after the demolition
            the casement windows extracted
                                    like gold teeth
stashed behind the jacaranda
           
   where the old auction sign
       presses into soil at the trunk’s base

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Poem Audio

  • Zenobia Frost reads 'Blueprint: Bramble Tce'