Take the walk, see the sights, smell the air,
See the lights and feel the smouldering heat.
Wide expanse of brick and sand abounds in the city.
Dense population and busy streets; but I hear it -
in the stillness, I feel the hum.
Stirring the senses, the city heat hums in short pulses.
Floats in the air, buried in the earth, flickering in the fire.
The sheen of sweat that trickles down your nape.
Thirty-five degrees is normal weather
Not boiling, just perfect – can one ask for more?
With constant heat, the temperature shifts only slightly.
Skin burning but not evident from the dark membrane.
Shall we lay by the sea shore?
Nothing beats the cooling effect of the beach.
Serenity comes with the bliss of cool blue hues.
Wigs tossed aside, lawyers respond to the Bar's call.
Sipping on happy juice, tensions and tongues loosen.
They seek solace in the secrets of the sand,
Women kneel in supplication towards the tide -
Crucifixes of wood and stainless steel wave in the air.
They pray to the spirit of the sea
‘Cleanse our land, purify our city’, they say.
Corruption spreads like gangrene;
With no expectation for working systems,
They turn to the Sea Salt deity for help.
Instead of clean white sand, prayer garments pristine abound.
Soon, the goddess of the sea will answer – soon.
Knees scuffed daily in penitence, a hope of salvation.
Surely she is strong enough to bring change – wild and wet
Waves come, bringing grit and shells but no relief.
If we pray harder they say, whiten our garments;
Silk not satin - glittery and pure as sheep.
And so they who believe adhere like flock.
Hope lies in the Bar Beach with imprints of our knees.
Dark cloudy skies, pregnant with thunderous rain.
And there is no shelter from the torrents.
The boulders act as breakers but fail,
Flooding the streets with no restraint.
Dirt litters doorsteps with deposits of the sea.
This time no lives are lost but we wonder.
Is the goddess angry with us?
Her reflection she sees in that tall glass building,
Across the road – right there opposite the beach.
The sea rushes forward towards the reflecting tower,
Housing suites of offices – prime real estate of seaside value.
‘Break it down City Council, don’t anger the mermaid’.
We know her rage brings destruction.
The goddess is more powerful than the government.
Instead of going to the polls, we prayed.
We’re wise enough not to incur her wrath, yet she rages.
Perhaps it is the horse rides on the sand.
Could it be the trading, garish clothing and loud music?
The Atlantic - sometimes serene, other times raging.
Around the world maybe, where it is cooler
Bar Beach is anything but quiet.
Drowning in the booze, I scoffed at the Lady Celestial.
Back at the cross impaled in the sand;
Grateful to the goddess for sparing her,
For another day of mercy and grace at Bar Beach.
If only she would understand the tides and stay away.