Late Ferry


The wooden ferry is leaving now;

I stay to watch

from a balcony, as it goes up onto

the huge, dark harbour,


out beyond a gangling jetty;

the palm tree tops

make the sound of touches

of a brush on the snare drum


in the windy night. It goes beyond

street lights’ fluorescence

over dark water, that ceaseless

activity, like chromosomes


uniting and dividing, and out beyond

the tomato stake patch

of the yachts, with their orange

lamps; leaving this tuberous


shaped bay, for the city,

above the plunge of night. Ahead,

neon redness trembles

down in the water, as if into ice, and


the longer white lights

feel nervously about in the blackness,

towards here, like hands

after the light switch.


The ferry is drawn along

polished marble, to be lost soon

amongst a blizzard of light

swarming below the Bridge,


a Busby Berkeley spectacular

with frenzied, far-off

choreography, in their silver lamé,

the Bridge like a giant prop.


This does seem in a movie theatre;

the boat is small as a moth

wandering through the projector’s beam,

seeing it float beneath the city.


I’ll lose sight of the ferry soon –

I can find it on darkness,

like tasting honeycomb,

filled as it is with its yellow light.