Psalm 56

There’s so much to keep from this poem
So much that’s too soon to know
So I turn to you
& the slip & slop of goldfish
Between your thighs
As we navigate the piles of liquefaction
On Shirley road
You – & your – more to me
Than a man can be – smile
Which tempts me to see
How it’s only in you
My river swims true
To the life that unfolds
In the silt & the gold –

To the flame that extends
From the hand of a friend

Kevin Moran 19/3/11

Whakapapa: This is the first poem I wrote after the Feb 22nd earthquake. It was a shocking time with Christchurch devastated & 185 people dead. Once more Annette & I were stunned with what had happened to our city. Some people were writing poetry about the disaster. For me however, there was ‘too much that’s too soon to know.’ So I took my time & sought to integrate my earthquake experience. I tried to stay present to myself & my muse (the subject of this poem). My muse never seems to rush. She flows simply with Nature out of the passion of her being. The image of ‘goldfish between your thighs’ comes from the day after the quake. Annette & I were helping to shift our son from his wrecked flat. His goldfish bowl had shattered during the quake. My granddaughter’s two goldfish were left lying on the water & glass splinter-soaked carpet. They were still alive when my son returned after running to my granddaughter’s school to see if she was safe. They must have been there on the carpet for at least three quarters of an hour. I was drawn to the odd sound of water splashing between Annette’s thighs as we transported these quake survivors to their new home.

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