A floating home to Laurens
who  kibbles  wheat and fries eggs,
who shakes beer with his Gado-Gado
and who never mended the  balustrade.

When the houseboat began to sink
he moved to a brighter mooring.
Ducks took over. Dock leaves, alder,
a tree of unclear parentage began to root
in the moist low timbers.
Soon what with wire worm, timberlice
and the wet substrata, a Crannog
or floating island was formed
and it became a chicken run.

The ivory roots descended cloudy to bottom
latched into silt. The tree strove above.
The flag was removed. Registration cancelled.
Vessel Licence became meaningless.
The narrow gangway became crisp debris,
feeding seed became dangerously exciting.
Brothels flourished around it
Ducks became quick, celebrated like
fruit salad.

Streetsweepers came to cleanse there
but they never touched it.
Enough dirt to deal with already.

It was a nonstop show now
men fought in delirium
women opened their bodies
businessmen opened museums
the place sold itself around
this soft regressive relic.

Waterways Maintenance Division
had only to trim the weed vines stiffly
and marvel at the strengthening rootstructure
like some amazonian mangrove
left to do its surviving.

Laurens made espresso, smoked,
and talked late with friends.

















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