The Resurrected Author (Poetry NZ - Issue 34) 

There you are

looking at the page 

and here Iam/was, earlier 


And I, then,

imagine/d you now, 

with your critical eye, 

hoping that I, then, 

will have had something 

good to say.

And rightly so - you’ve 

given me your time and 

I shouldn’t waste it. 

So let’s geton with it: 

there you are, 

and here I was. 

Am I speaking? 

No,you’re speaking to 



It’s not my voice you hear in 

your head, but yours. 

What am I doing then? 

Am I thinking through you?

What am I telling you? 

I am telling you that you’re beautiful. 

And you are reading. 

Reading this: 

You’re more beautiful than a billion stars. 

Wondering: How so? 

Then, shrugging, 

thumbing over the page, 

you leave the print of a 

galaxy in the 


You say you need to find yourself, 
as if yourself is some kind of cliche,
wandering around out there somewhere,
which it is.

I suggest you stay at home 
for a day or two, 
because you occasionally 
show up there to 
use the mirror or 
take a Tramadol. 

No point in 
going out again tonight: 
even if you are out there, you won’t 
be able to recognise yourself 
any more than you can 
watch yourself blink,
any more than you can 
taste your own tongue. 

And even if you can 
find yourself, what will you do?
Look at yourself for a moment, 
then pass by, whispering to 
yourself in the second person? 

As you can probably tell, I have 
my doubts about your 
chances. But, please, if 
you do round a corner somewhere 
and see yourself standing there, 
tap yourself and point in my direction.

Premise One: an Apologia for Love   (Toe Tree Journal - Issue 3) 

Yes, we've had some disgraceful 
felonious  arguments, 
but I'm just as ashamed 
of our innocence. 
Just think, the ridiculous 
premise we started with:
p.1: I am alone, you are alone.
This is an oversimplification I’m 
sure, but humour me for a moment and 
remember our first night together when
we said things we didn’t believe ourselves
and agreed wholeheartedly 
with each other's inconsistencies - 
What sort of a raison d’être was that? 
Did we have anything 
in the way of a sound rationale? 
Were you a red herring? 
Was I a straw man?
Let’s hope that when the conclusion does arrive 
that it contradicts the first premise 
in other words, what I’m trying to say is 
you get a better argument as you go along...

Shedding fictions in Albert Park (Side Stream - Issue 17)

Old oaks tear out their hair

old oaks tear

out their hair 

at the thought of 

another winter. 

I decided then: we were walking 

through Albert park 

just like lovers, my hand in 

the back pocket 

of your jeans. 

Foot-scuffed leaves.

Your ankle turning 

on an acorn. 

The old oaks. 

Nothing to say, so I told you 

I once tore out my 

hair - all of it.

Neither of us believed me, 

or even pretended to.

The truth is, there were 

no leaves in Albert park 

as we walked. 

We were already in winter.

It was time to say goodbye. 

We had told many lies. 

The line about the oaks 

came from a haiku I wrote 

last year. 

The whole thing 

was a fabrication, 

a page in a fiction, 

a leaf that had to be shed sooner or later. 

Sleep against the city, 
against reflections: sedans passing 
through trucks, 
pedestrians through buildings. 

Ignore the fear that you 
might not get home – that 
you might wake up inside a 
circuit of barbed wire fences, 
a land of large wheels. 
Ignore it - don’t worry. 
Someone else will reach up 
and light Stopping. 

Let your temple quake against the glass, 
count the power-lines in your mind’s eye, 
imagine you are kidnapped, blindfolded, 
memorising the turns. Wait 
for the shock of stillness.

The laundered rags outside the 
mechanics workshop, 
strung up like Tibetan prayer-flags. 
Would anyone think so? 
There are certain strands of likeness, 
common threads, running between the 
monks robes and the overalls, between
the monk and the mechanic: 
both are always 
head down, 
humming to themselves, 
working on the nuts and 
bolts of transience. 

Are there sufficient connections 
to get us from here to the next place? 
An old guy smoking outside 
the Philosophy Department once said: 
"We're like clotheslines, and every 
experience we have in life is pegged to the line…" 
I didn't understand, but 
nodded like a toe toe in the wind. 
"…the more years behind you 
the more you have on the line, 
the harder it all gets to understand." 
Again, I nodded. 

Later, these fragments connected: 
Friday afternoon of Labour weekend, 
I see a ute going down the road with a long 
plank surrendering one piece of white cloth.
The need to string together words, 
to tie these loose ends.

Pathoscape   (Massey University, Creative Writing Anthology, 139.123: School of English & Media)

[pron: pey-thos-skeyp] noun [Origin: 2006; 2007 for def.]

Etymology: pathos "quality that arouses the emotions," 1668, from Gk. pathos "feeling, emotion” 
When revisiting a place significant to your childhood,
or, as the case may be, a place you used to frequent with an old lover, such as 
+ scape "place, or scene," 1773, abstracted from landscape;
as a new combined element, first attested use 1796, in ‘prisonscape’ 
The Eden Garden 
24 Omana Avenue 
1. the connection between a place or setting and an emotion 
2. a feeling of being confined to an earlier time and place 
You can’t distinguish between your present-self and the
self detained in the past. You’re neither. You need a new definition.
The inorganic collection

Here it is:
the street is a large intestine.

One might mistake it 
for a ticker-tape parade:
the strips of packing paper,
the un-spooled cassettes.

People arrive naked and 
depart in boxes;
appliances arrive in boxes and 
depart naked.

The plastic bag whirls 
in the winter winds. 
A stock sequence
in the pantomime.

I don’t know which to prefer, 
hailstones in the gutter
or polystyrene beans.

O, thin men of Grey Lynn: 
what were these things doing 
in your houses in the first place?

A suspicious van will be trawling past,
often an Econovan.

Next to the jar of bolts
and the bag of sea-shells
an old bucket collects the sky.

It seems as if they’re never going
to leave. And then, when you least 
expect it 

Translucent yellow grass.
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