pleasure complex

in its way this seems almost an industrial setting
stark and intense accommodation for such simple pleasures

close your eyes
and listen

behind the surface echo and clamour
is a deeper constant
rushing water
surrounding
purposeful
the breeze you feel on your bare back and arms
is moving as though funnelled down a shaft
lightening the closeness of clammy humidity

now open
what do you see

you might expect aquatic blue to assert itself
but no
here it is a clinical white

roof and walls are white tiled
the grouting between each tile a gash of black

the stairs are framed in vivid white metal

spiralling tubes circle in descent
through a twisted mass of white fibreglass
in just five seconds
of forced and frenetic sliding
black rivets add the strength of contrast

living colour comes only from naked skin
and the harlequin costumes of bathers
queuing on the platform
awaiting their turn to use the apparatus
with its roaring slide
that fades to pitch
within a moment of entry into the chasm

full length plate windows
show trees outside through steam
that clouds the glass
but the waving branches loaded with leaf
are overpowered
no match for the faded whiteness of bursting clouds

white and wet
inside and out
it is perhaps as well
to immerse here
in the white dazzle of this industrial pleasure complex
as to soak in the pallid drizzle beyond the walls

 


© Frank Prem, 2002

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