an Aotearoa poetry journal | ISSN 2744-3248

Poems by Ian C Smith

Rain, sunburn, hardship, alive

Ian C Smith

Published on
page 30 of Tarot #3
(Dec 2021)

Footsore, hot, he totes his needs in a pack,
t-shirts, tobacco, tourist info, tent,
diaries, discount vodka, on his back
through towns’ censure because he pays no rent,
to their limits where he bums the next ride,
artwork taped to atlas for a stark sign.
To pitch camp he leaves the road, crowds inside,
hears the wheels of freedom’s mesmeric whine,
eats, reads, by torchlight in arbored places.
Mexico, he tells drivers who ask where?
This idea blazes in their rapt faces,
prime years fast eddying soon stripped bare.
To evade regret’s hound haunting old age
he logs latent miles, rattling duty’s cage.