It travels up the cracks between floorboards like rot.
Fibres decaying more quickly that the feet
wearing them down can pick up on. The centre
bubbles and boils daily, vomiting forth rules
and regimes that make the smooth inner workings
catch in halting breaths. A solid foundation
now revealed to be wet sand, washed away
by the smallest hint of tide. Green, orange, red:
a progression of colours mirror the emotional response
of the gathering crowd. Someone offers a hand
but their fingers are blackened by frostbite.