Big Bridge #9

Poets of Australia


Michael Sariban


They carved up Berlin four slices of pie
imposed two versions of English. Then armies
arrived, without guns, began clearing the rubble.
Amazing how many trees had survived, hardier
than stone. I smuggled them in as invisible
baggage, concealed like illegal drugs
a yardstick to measure this landscape by,
a bridge to the first urban dreaming.

And sometimes in winter, or in the peculiar
cleanness of storm-washed air, a particular tree
will beam me back to the streets of my childhood:
the wrought-iron fences, weathered stone lions
spitting their silver rain, the roots of old trees
erupting into the light.

Michael Sariban is a Brisbane poet. He has published four collections of poetry, most recently Facing thePacific (Interactive Press1999) and Luxuries (Ginninderra Press 2001). He recently completed a new manuscript, The Devil You Know

Previous Australian Poet      Australian Poet Index      Next Australian Poet