Anzac 2

At the bay
Of manuka and pohutukawa
There is above, the park
Of linden, maple, oak and gum.

In autumn colours
Today, stands a tree.
Several silver branches lean fallen
From the recent storm.

Into the sky are
Arrayed, expanding flights of
Green and yellow, warm pink and orange
Amid dying claws of brown.

But look down –
Among the fallen, the graves
Of dark leaves hanging on silver, the one
Bright heart red, trembling.

Anzac 1

The loose metal road climbs
up from the bay.
A walk in the park was a
walk through the past today.

Memory, as a whole, is a
warm capacity for feeling.
But every episode remembered
leaves me yet, in their multitude,
reeling.

A trusty stick sweeps away the
wreckage before me, the single
feeling returns, as a warmth
in the air I’m breathing.

Across my shoulders it goes.
The posture, if a pose, still
expresses and slows into depth
this feeling, with hands,
like bridge supports, holding both ends.

The rocking of my spine, the
sure grip of both arms, and
pressing on uphill, a sudden sense
shifts the scene, as it feels
like it’s a rifle I’m shouldering.

A soldier returning, a cup of tea
when I’m home, if not company then
some toast with tomato and pepper.
My mind drops into a grave
and sombre respect for the brave.

As I trudge up said hill, the past
no burden but the warmth of the
present, all homes, built on the warmth
of those who protected, yet were
subject to trouble, neglect, dejection.

Colours

soft blue
and maroon

that’s my
room, what

colours have
come to me

– – – – –

bottle green
i haven’t seen
you for a while

now in a blanket
you used to be

a knitted jumper
i could draw
down to my knees

– – – – – –

dolphin blue
i wish i was you

caught up in
childhood fantasy
feeling it were true

Peace

Peace is in the blue shoulder sheen
Of the pukeko, forgetting that it
May have been he who ate the ducklings.

Peace is in realizing the lawn grows in clumps
Like bamboo forests, with clear spaces between
Where duck’s feet fold the blades down like weaving.

Peace is in the way the fern fronds leap up
Like karate masters with multiple arms
Holding their elbows high in seeking the light.

Peace is in the dreaming sea sparkling tide
Quietly creeping along the mangrove shoreline,
Breathing through a blend of pale blue and green.

Reaching

None of the other tulip flowers
Has been as singular as this one
Bruised beetroot ruddy red layers
Lit at the tips by silver morning sun
It reaches out on steady stem swaying
Nodding in the air its head as if to say
My cup stretches catches light playing
Through my depths adoring this day
But my neck is strong leaning long
From the heavy bowl holding my body
And I open to death gladly scarlet song
Of my surrender my breathing nodding
Upturned clapper of a bell tolling the time
When these petals will fully open fall away
Break against a wall crucible of will chime
In resonant waves radiating reach to eternity

Hollow In The Grass

Sitting down in the long grass, now there’s a start
How often does one sit on the ground at the very least
And here one was sitting down in, the long grasses
They swirled in arcs accentuated now by the hand
Waving, pawing, patting, sweeping, grading

The counter-clockwise matching of body and field
Lying, sitting there like the girl from ‘Christina’s World’
By Andrew Wyeth, hip leaning into the movement
Torso twisting, right arm passing over the seedheads
Exploring the sensation, the symbiosis of being

Enveloped by this place, and now noticing the way
The stalks and long leaves folded in and further down
Disappearing into hollow in the ground, weaving
Like the pull of a hole, like a plughole and the water
Leaving this shallow land, seeing now the circle parting

At the centre and an open sky clear for miles below
Where a river wandered across a land quite clearly,
The banks where earth was exposed, the realizing
Of this second place, reeling with vertigo now, and
Definitely heading into this breathing of false surface

World and strength of landscape on flow of outbreath
Below, becoming part of this primal earth, what was
Before now just a show, mistaken identity, somewhere
Just out the back of a place behind a house by a road
Behind a picket fence and an old concrete path that

Lead out to a washing line and a chainlink fence where
One day one finds oneself on the ground alone, beyond
This, out on the backlot, the unassumming and forgotten
Field, with the world now just the intimacy of seedheads
And ants and the warmth of the past and the present,

And into this world you must go, one must, one finds
Oneself parting the grasses to the strangeness of the blue
Below, the open sky on another, prima materia, the body
Becoming the landscape, the river meandering, the sound
Calling one closer, folding in, enfolded, no longer hollow.