Poem Notes

It is my aim as a poet/artist to give expression to my cultural roots coupled with my life experiences. My work reflects the lives of the people I have met and places I have lived throughout the land and the times I have lived in. I am a surrealist/dada artist and therefore my writing reflects both the inner and outer landscapes of my life. I grew up in Auckland, lived in Otago where I worked on the railway, and now I live in Paekakariki, north of Wellington.  

On the Death of Your Mother 

This poem emphasises the close spiritual connection I have with a woman friend of mine who I have been in love with for many years. The poem is centred around the time her mother died and how I found out about it almost immediately. It states the practical nature of our aroha, with my having a car available for her use when she needed it, a car I had bought several years before when I lived in Dunedin and that I knew she would need some day.

Meeting Te Rauparaha 

This poem is about an extraordinary meeting I had on Paekakariki Beach with the great chief. I had been swimming and was drying myself off when I felt a presence beside me. Te Rauparaha started talking to me regarding some issues I was dealing with. He spoke in Māori and stayed for about five minutes.

Hone Tuwhare 

Hone and I were old drinking buddies from Dunedin days in the 1970s. We kept in touch over the years and did poetry readings at various places including Paremoremo Prison. We were both unusual in the poetry scene as we both had working class backgrounds and had worked on the railways among other jobs. This poem reflects my aroha for the loss of a valued friend.

Kia Aroha – Rima

This poem is about a dream I had relating to the woman in the poem ‘On the Death of Your Mother’. The dream suggests that she and I had met in a previous lifetime during the first missionary landings in NZ/Aotearoa and how we were our ancestors reliving an earlier time.

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