new zealand electronic poetry centre

Ursula Bethell

online works



Solitary, after all, were the gardener,
But for the accompaniment of words.

In this my matutinal seclusion
Sights, sounds, and scents, all, all agree to please.
Comely the smile of all well-natured subjects,
Goodly the smell of wholesome, up-turned soil.
Lovely above all is this silence –
But the silence is vibrant with words.

           They murmur in the distance like bees,
           They whisper in the rustle of the trees,
           Then springs one, instant to be heard,
           Sings on my shoulder like a bird.


From a Garden in the Antipodes (Sidgwick & Jackson, 1929)


Last updated 9 April, 2005