The Same Bay, Twice – Tim Sinclair

Traffic hum from the Anzac Bridge, and you watch
the city coalesce from dawn. Buildings emerge
to support their glowing logos, the squatting chunk
of fish market turns blue.

Day begins, like any day in history.
Sandstone underneath your feet.

Eight arms synch in octopus precision,
skim the boat so lightly
that it hardly leaves a ripple.

Human hands push
against nothing but water.

Dragon Boat teams follow behind, proceed
less rapidly, but no less full
of purpose.

Take a good look
because it’s coming to an end.

Not one of them, none of them, no
heart-pounding rower, no Dragon Boat crew member,
dripping with life, is going to outlast
this century.

I’m throwing bombs in the bay now, calling down
cataclysm. Take a good look, because
the rising oceans are going to swallow it all.

Or war, or fire, or poor council planning, but
one thing’s certain—this place as you know it
will cease. And you. Yes, you. You
will certainly cease.

Take it all in, as much
as you can bear. Breathe
as deeply as your lungs will allow, close
your eyes, imprint the soundscape
on your mind.

You’re never coming back here
again.