Dawn burns at the horizon, coal-fire orange
shooting glare at the clouds’ underbelly
and the flat pre-sunrise grey recedes,
letting silhouettes assume their form –
rooftops, outcrops, forest – until
a promiscuous cone of light expands
over city edges, silverback ridges,
and the cusp of sleep eventually withdraws.
Whatever is taking shape is ceasing to be
half-dreamt speculation. The long doubts
foreshorten to a swung-open bathroom door
and a row of air-conditioning units.
Not so very far below, flip-flops slap
on paving slabs as families lug picnics,
towels, inflatables towards the beach
along a shaded, pastel-painted trench.
Up here on the balcony, the tubular steel
of the railing is already warming to the day.