an Aotearoa poetry journal | ISSN 2744-3248

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Tarot #07
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Tarot #05
Tarot #04
Tarot #03
Tarot #02
Tarot #01

My Travelling Papers

Crumbs of crumpled tealeaf twist about the blanched afternoon hour. I have shifted onto my third fresh cup and my sketchbook is now filling, a colander of names and trinkets. Children in their swimsuits and their mothers sing along the promenade, performing to the gulls and they play castanets for the fishermen who tug and tug at their latest trawl. The Duke Festival today carves along fiberglass, cloth-like barrels roll out to sea. Big notes call out from the library. A tone of sepia through low cloud unveils a collarless dog without an owner, tufts of hair hanging from its mangy bones, patrolling the buckets of trevally and gutrot. A dozen impish ears prick up, and several pairs of tiny instruments start to click it closer. One mother clicks it away, unashamed. My sketchbook, ample in its capricious nature, gets netted in both spheres.

The swilling croak of a myna curtsies upon arrival and takes a turn about the page. I toss away bits of bread from an egg sandwich, watch the crumbs scatter and a bright bird dab its thanks. There is olive green chicken fern and belladonna everywhere—the path is gradually filling. We had driven through Dallington, along Linwood Ave and up to New Brighton with the windows down and six kilometers away at afternoon prayer, another barrel is loaded and dispatched. A year from now the gunman, whose name we dare not speak, will get life without parole.