The Age of Rubbish
I rode my bike through the last days
of the rubbish dump over shallow hills
covering the waste of decades.
After the war they filled in the bay,
the muddy shallows and the salt marsh,
with discarded war waste, planes,
tanks and jeeps. Drove them
into the mud till they sank,
then drove the next tank over the top.
They had to punch holes in the crates
of unassembled spitfires so they
would sink. The spoils of war.
A sea wall was built, a hard boundary
between the victory of land
and the flow of the river.
The age of rubbish, a public tip
for the garbage of the fifties.
Methane outbursts mixed with
old aviation fuel seeping
from the depths. Rats and crows.
- Mark Roberts 2016
Mark Roberts is a Sydney poet. He edits Rochford Street Review. His latest collection, "Concrete Flamingos" has just been released.