new zealand electronic poetry centre


Albert Wendt

online works

Parents & Children


Parents and their children come
to one another through many doors
that laugh, slap, clap, slash, bleed
block, cry, and let-you-though sometimes.
And by the time they meet
they've been seived to the rags and bones
of who they were and can't remember.

Around our house mynah birds
dart and dive.  I count
the holes they piece in the sky.
My son is in the garage fixing
the brakes of his bike.
In her bedroom my daughter 
is locked into Captain America.

I've left believing in God,
my children are starting towards Him.
I carry willingly the heritage of my Dead,
my children have yet to recognise theirs.
Someday before they leave our house
forever, I'll tell them:  'Our Dead
are the splendid robes our souls wear.'

The armada of mynah birds continues
to attack the trees and sky.
Their ferocity cuts wounds
in my thoughts.
Through those wounds like doors
I'll go this morning
to meet my children.


Albert Wendt


Last updated 11 May 2001