Thursday, July 3, 2008

Steel giraffes

I took these photographs at the Waterfront a few days ago. I have a weird affinity for industrial machines, cranes, bulldozers, graders, etc., and feel compelled to take photographs whenever I see one. (I have not yet discovered the psychological source of this obsession, so any suggestions will be helpful ....)

But it made me think of this poem by my favourite South African poet, Douglas Livingstone:
Steel Giraffes
There are, probably, somewhere
arms as petal-slight as hers;
there are probably somewhere
wrists as slim;
quite probably, someone has
hands as slender-leafed as hers;
the fingers, probably
bare of rings, as thin.

Certainly, there is nowhere
such a dolour
of funnels, mastings, yards,
filaments of dusk-ringing shrouds
woven through the word goodbye,
riveted steel giraffes
tactfully looking elsewhere
necks very still to the sky.

4 comments:

kendalee said...
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kendalee said...

Beautiful pictures and such an apt poem. I am not familiar with Douglas Livingstone's poetry but I am encouraged to check it out now - thank you! Strangely, I work with a girl who is phobic about structures like this. Properly phobic. Large metal structures including cranes, scaffolding and oil rigs - especially if they're rusty - really freak her out. Even pictures of them make her jumpy. No idea where this comes from. Odd isn't it? I tend to agree with you. There's something fascinating about them.

Anairam said...

kendalee: So glad I could introduce you to DL's work. Sadly, he died in 1996 or thereabouts.

♥ Tiny Red said...

they are so wonderful, aren't they?!
my cranes picture collection is growing by the day!
i love the way you described them: steel giraffes! great! :)