Watching earthquakes at home




You can keep watch

on earthquakes at home

with odds & ends

scraps of copper wire

an empty tin of

Planters cocktail peanuts

a diamond stylus (never used)

a motor from an abandoned alarm clock


The urgent temporality

of underworld shocks

and death-dealing blasts

your new routine


Transported for a penny-a-day

to the Aleutian Islands

(steam rising from snow-covered cones)

or the fault six miles beneath the floor

of Sagami Bay


A permanent signature of

River Red Gums rising

granite tors splintering

rainwater tanks bursting corrugated seams


Marks for every minute

the turning drum inscribing

a parched wind  a cresting wave


our juddering palimpsest




Watching earthquakes at home was described as a new hobby in PIX Magazine, September 26 1953: The Great Kanto Earthquake of September 1 1923 emanated from a seismic fault beneath Sagami Bay in Japan.

Share This