new zealand electronic poetry centre

D A V I D   H O W A R D




Make more use of your hands
  and less of your tongue. Clay cliffs,
  a shingly beach for bloated sheep
until high tide disturbs those blown
from over-confidence. Vinegar
  ink marks the tin-plate letters on wool-bales:
  greasy or washed. Watch your tongue
because it lasts even longer: harsh
words turn the dog. If you drive
a flock of shorn wethers
across Oamaru Plain, tailing
with the rattle of flax, you’ll find
language sets you apart – but how far?
And, near to this, a hall of torn-up stone.



Last updated 23 April, 2006