L o v e ,  W a r   a n d   L a s t   T h i n g s
   n z e p c

LAURIS EDMOND    

Lauris Edmond   (1924-2000)


Auckland:

Florence:


 

Directions

When you slipped in beside me
I wanted to hold you completely,
make one entire, encompassing gesture;
but you remain always a foreign country,
a place where my papers permit me
explorations, also familiar journeys
that may again discover
love’s recognisable landmarks

as one might come to a piazza
in a remote and beautiful city
remembering evenings when the violinist
swayed to his song and the black-brimmed
magician strode around his invisible circle
and touched his lips to the crowd
and then called softly in
the expectant dusk his Ah, fantastica!

Selected Poems 1970-2000. Ed. KO Arvidson(Bridget Williams Books, 2001). Recorded 2008 by Frances Edmond at the University of Auckland.

 



Train Song


Deep in the night they call out from the mountains,
they are stirring the bowl of black winds in the mountains,
now they blow a long braying thunder beside me,
they elbow and stamp through my pasture of sleep;

the eternally purposeful even-keeled trains, how
they conceive absolutely their duty, their scope,
how they bow their great heads to be timetabled, tamed,
with what giant composure they all measure up.

It is evening, it is raining - on palm leaves,
on the iron gates, the orange tree branches, the tiny
green lilies that push through the stones, on the hand
I hold out. It is raining now all over Europe;

and slowly in sleekness with sheen on the rails
my trains sinew by me and eerily peer -
grave with surprise are the faces of trains
and helpless in turn my white face at the door.

The trains go to Venice, Brindisi, Geneva,
on to the Caucasus, Russia, Mongolia;
passing, they are passing, it is day, it is dark
and my dear ones are sleeping; I will never go home

Selected Poems 1970-2000. Ed. KO Arvidson(Bridget Williams Books, 2001). Recorded 2008 by Frances Edmond at the University of Auckland.

 

  


Lauris Edmond
credit: Robert Cross

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Last updated 26 June, 2008