new zealand electronic poetry centre




M a t a r i k i

agent of God on the darkest year of night   in bare feet   
crouched beside me    this tin roof protecting us from the wind 

we share  a new year with your six crazy sisters
as you tell it our mad whānau pōrangi

on this first morning of mornings what use sleep?
figures huddle   together on frosted balconies

in the treetops    pressing stars between the pages
of prayer   white openings that glimpse heaven's  brilliant

paradise   the virgin hope of martyrs    we seek out stories
with our bruised eyes     the stars' confluence 

a bright swelling architecture   of souls   giving words to
unknowable things     celestial nouns   in a stellar library

of beauty unimagined    painting shadows on our skin   
blue marks of remembering     the shared lesions of love’s   

bone and sinew    our private life   a public parade of stars
a still-warm astronomy   of separated bodies   sulphur sparks

and long-haired comets thrown across   the intimate distance
more morning than night   these acts of contrition 

pushing against heaven’s own counteract     measuring
our bodies against this urgency   this appetite for such larger life

Last updated 9 June, 2016