Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Tuesday poem

The cat ate my Tuesday poem yesterday.

And every other poem I can think of posting here is still in copyright.
But fortunately I can go to the Tuesday Poem Blog and read the fine offerings there.

Storm Warnings

The usually sleepy Leith this morning in raging mode through the University of Otago Campus.

I've seen it far worse - up over the banks - and who knows what it'll look like when the water drains down from the hinterland.

We've had rain for days and today expect a southerly change with snow.

Better batten down any hatches that weren't already safely bolted.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Mecca Cafes

Plum Crumble at Mecca Mission Bay

Mecca Devonport - something with mushrooms on top

Family Reunion

This is the Tabby's close family member the Birman.

The Birman has a built-in comfy bean bag to recline on...

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Tuesday Poem: 'On Fame'

"You cannot eat your cake and have it too." - Proverb

How fevered is the man who cannot look
Upon his mortal days with temperate blood,
Who vexes all the leaves of his life's book,
And robs his fair name of its maidenhood;
It is as if the rose should pluck herself,
Or the ripe plum finger its misty bloom,
As if a Naiad, like a meddling elf,
Should darken her pure grot with muddy gloom;
But the rose leaves herself upon the briar,
For winds to kiss and grateful bees to feed,
And the ripe plum still wears its dim attire;
The undisturbed lake has crystal space;
Why then should man, teasing the world for grace
Spoil his salvation for a fierce miscreed?

~ John Keats

More Tuesday Poems

Monday, May 10, 2010

Mr Key you do not have a mandate to sell the family silver

Tshirt seen at the recent enormous demonstration on Queen Street Auckland, against the mining of New Zealand's Scenic Reserves.

The National-led coalition got into charge of the government Piggy Bank by pretending to be "Labour Lite".
The truth of their right wing agenda is becoming more clear to more people.

Tuesday Poem: 'Before I get into sleep with you' by Janet Frame

Poster produced by Phantom Billstickers

for NZ Poetry Day 2006

Poem (c) Janet Frame Literary Trust.

First published in THE GOOSE BATH (Random House New Zealand 2006)

Short and sweet! It's already a classic!

And it's wise relationship advice too.

I heard Bill Manhire yesterday on the Lynn Freeman arts show on Radio NZ saying that he has seen this poster on the walls of student flats.

More Tuesday Poems at Tuesday Poem Blog.

No Junk Mail

Optical illusion

One of the big cruise ships to visit Dunedin Harbour this summer slips between Taiaroa Head and the Aramoana sandspit.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mother's Day

A newborn me in my mother's arms, at the nursing home in Devonport, Auckland.

*insert thoughts of love and loss and gratitude*

Saturday, May 8, 2010

We shall have trains

Toy trains, that is. Thanks to this train-hating right wing government, and their flunkies at Kiwi Rail, we won't be making our own trains at our perfectly good Railway Workshops. Not unless there is a miracle, and when did we have our last miracle? Not since Saint Helen was at the tiller and the railways were bought back for the people of New Zealand. Now that the lowest common denominator has locked up "nanny" in the attic and put Prince John and the Sheriff of Nottingham in charge, there is once again in the land a regime that steals from the poor to give to the rich, and that is willing to sell the family jewels and put our people out of work in order to line the pockets of fat cats overseas.

It's enough to make one scream "Revolution". But instead I took the afternoon off and went to the model train show at Dunedin's Forbury Racecourse. Terrific. Who doesn't love model trains? And the extra bonus is the painstaking work put into the backgrounds, the roads and villages and quarries and forests and camping grounds, the little people, the graveyards, the night clubs, the factories... Wonderful... And for the addicts, there are stalls selling all the paraphernalia.


A tale of a cat burglar

This week I made the acquaintance of the Cool Cat above, name of "Laddie".

Laddie was posing in such a typical this-cat-owns-the universe fashion, that I, just passing by, stopped to take a photograph. I miss my own dear departed Tabby so much, I take what Tabby flotsam I can pick up on the byways...

Laddie's human servant noticed my interest and struck up a conversation. Apparently Ms Laddie is already famous, and has had her picture in the paper, owing to her habit of stealing women's underwear and bringing it home. She likes groceries too, and regularly swipes fresh bread.

When I got home I Googled "Dunedin cat thief" and I didn't find Laddie. But I found Essie, and I found Roxy, and I found Podge. I also found Mittens, but I lost her again.

It seems that cat thievery is a long honoured tradition in Dunedin.

So endeth the latest instalment of the Tabby news.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Tuesday Poem: Postcards from Warrington ~ Pamela Gordon

The light opens up & pours out. I am asleep
(shielded against it) but to pay attention better
to my dream of colour, I open my eyes.
Light empties out great spaces in the sky. It flows
over the landscape. I was dreaming "shadows
can be composed of colour, too."
A few late kowhai blooms hang from the tree.
They move in the breeze like cocoons. I am
waiting for the tui.
The water of this bay keeps whatever you throw at it.
It is an excellent mimic of land and cloud.
It mocks the settlers with their own rubbish.
My favourite argument is to insist that darkness
has the right to be defined without reference to
its lack of light. In the evening I have noticed the
sky blot out all colour from the hills until
they glow like bone.
Each rock pool is a mirror. One is a photograph
of two power poles.
Dawn yesterday & today coincided with full tide.
There is less subtlety that way. I had grown
attached to the bright early ribbons on the muddy
estuary. The real attraction, of course, is the sky.
I have seen a sea fog constructed over Blueskin Bay
as a mezzanine, at the level of my window - godwits
on the shore below it, the raised arm of Mt Cargill above
poised to catch long distance radio waves.
This is a place of windows & mirrors.
If I turn away from the forms of Mopanui & Mihiwaka
as they frame the southern horizon
like sneaky intuition their reflection surprises me.
BBC Music Showcase: "Delius' The Walk
to the Paradise Garden is perhaps one of the most beautiful
pieces of music ever composed..." (What's wrong
with a bit of sentiment anyway?)
Once when I walked around the filthiest edge
of the mudflat I disturbed a group of herons.
Their loping take-off was awesome, their raucous cries
alarming as they circled away & away again.
Rain is not often heavy here. It is tentative.
It likes to find its way through open windows
to spatter on pages of half-written letters.
Three wood pigeons thrash about in a blaze-of-yellow
broom bush. Their weighty bodies cause a chaos
of green & gray & gold.
It's time to heat the Zip, to wash the dishes.
Living out here alone, it is easy to entertain
domestic obsessions.
Over & over the clear four-note of the bellbirds.
The calling-out of children, cycling past to the beach.
No one admits to leaving the five yellow roses
at my door last week. I have put them in the vase
I brought with me from my old life.
There is a new moon. I am restless. I need to travel
with all this energy into all these images.
I shift from source to surface & back again.
Polynesian patterns dominate the decoration
of the houses I visit. Tapa or siapo is comfortable here
when the hot wind blows from Central Otago.
I hear that my ex-husband has shaved off his beard.
I have cut my hair short. We are convincing
ourselves that we are different people.
The mudflat is a mirror too. A huge, mildewed,
scoured, flaky mirror. The pine trees along the sandspit
drop cones onto the caked edge of it.
The sea roars on Warrington Beach. You can see Hector's dolphins
at play in the waves, or an old sea lion resting in the sand dunes.
It is possible to walk to Rabbit Island at low tide.
Do not put chemicals down the long-drop,
the dunny with the best view in the world!
For the first time this week the sun has come out.
It is wading at the feet of pied stilts.
I am asked how it feels to live next to a mirror
in a world where one might contract
AIDS from a teardrop. I think of mud, of prisms.
Of all this grand exposure there is one moment
I have longed to capture. There was a pyramid of light
in the sunset direction, a wedge of silver in the tide.
How can I hold on to it? Should I even want to?

Links to more Tuesday poems on the TUESDAY POEM BLOG.