an Aotearoa poetry journal | ISSN 2744-3248

Poems by Keith Nunes

Quiet third

Keith Nunes

Published on
page 37 of Tarot #6
(June 2023)

The quiet third
Person makes the conversation go round,
The man in the middle
Being talked across
As the three promenade
Along St Heliers Beach,
As if he isn’t there, and
When he’s not
The conversation dries up and
The tide ebbs away,
Anxiety swirls around the pair in a faintly fishy breeze,
The search for a quiet third
Becomes the talk
Of the walk back,
Holding the gap between

Stairways to the jet-stream

Keith Nunes

Published on
page 38 of Tarot #6
(June 2023)

Desert coloured motes
 Floating in my gazpacho,
  Across my eyes, 
  Through cadenced vents in the sky,
    On the backs of wild horses,
     Digressing in swooning swarms,
      Stairways to the jet-stream,
       Under the wings of feathered theropod dinosaurs, 
     Collect in the thoughts of irradiating children,
     Linger on the lilting voices of the ecstatic,
   Drift in on the intent of the westerly
  Sweep away silently in the folds of a chimaera

Wide enough

Keith Nunes

Published on
page 39 of Tarot #6
(June 2023)

It’s a pleasing room with
something of a view,
There’s someone else
in the house,
We have engaged
in instances centring on
I’ve closed my door,
Out in the house
a creak shadows a step,
A cluster of creaks implies intent,
As is usual at this time of night
the steps and their
Shadowy creaks come to a halt
outside my door,
I delicately unlock the door,
Hesitate before opening it,
Listen for the breathing,
‘Yes?’ I always say,
and open the door
wide enough,
Only wide enough


Keith Nunes

Published on
page 26 of Tarot #3
(Dec 2021)

She’s a student
Of the ticking watch
                  that has lost all sense of time
The singular pulse                         that’s mass-produced
The kettle as a drum
The coupling click-clack of a train making connections

She hears shadows stretching through the day
The sun flaming, the dawn fanning out

She can hear you                       whisper to whispers
The creasing of a face
Stars roaring to a conclusion

She can hear a bird latch onto the wind
                                                      hears it land

Memorial domain

Keith Nunes

Published on
page 26 of Tarot #3
(Dec 2021)

A slab of marble memories rises
                                                        Patiently, heavily from a
                                                       Quaking emerald hill,

Paths like rope curl around                                          A basket of mysteries
Laid evenly for the shoe, the boot,

When the clouds dilute and disperse and
Our big star has clear sight of us
People in pairs, people with their picnics

Watching the middle distance where
Sails skim over the
                                          Shards-of-glass glistening sea,

A young man re-reads his great-grandfather’s name,
Runs a finger over the engraved print,
                                                                                      Steps back,
                                                                                      Throws a frisbee for his dog