AOTEAROA

AO TEA ROA – land of the long white
cloud like fresh table linen carefully
smoothed over a trestle at a spring
wedding, making the sky’s pious Della
Robbia blue seem less well scudded
with cumulopalaces and stratocathedrals.

Meanwhile beneath the cloud my land
proves lost, to be found only in
Postcards and tourist booklets (O
Baudrillard) as if viewed through the
wrong end of a telescope. I am no
Elf, no Hobbit, nor Orc. I am Pākehā.

These eyes have known great cities,
then fat Falstaff Kererū in his malachite
monk’s casque, suddenly disrupts my
tranquil quietus with the thudding heart
palpitation of his wings breathlessly

leaving only a bough nodding after him.

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