new zealand electronic poetry centre

Dinah Hawken


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ON THE RIVER AFTER MONTHS OF BITCHING
 
 
Socrates says not to let a day pass without discussing goodness,
 
so now I will dwell on the small raft
of kindness, its five totara planks strapped
firmly together with flax, shifting amongst
the currents and travelling wickedly on,
 
now I will dwell on the small raft
of joy, poling away from the dogged shore
my faithful bitch by my side
leaving a little pile of shit at my feet,
 
now I will dwell on the river
of great appreciation for all
thoughtful and staunch,
message-sending friends
 
and for every boss who can
keep shrewdness and compassion
like two lively identical twins
in the heart of the office
 
and for every politician who can
keep ambition and compassion
like two lively identical twins
in the heart of the country
 
and for every journalist who can
keep accuracy and compassion
like two lively identical twins
in the heart of the story
 
and for the long clear message of the river itself
whose phrases we naturally hear
when our spirits rise like robin and kakariki
in the buoyant layers of the beech forest.
 
 


From The Little Book of Bitchihg (Very Cross Books/Sport 1998)

Dinah Hawken



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Last updated 14 December, 2004