Everything is edges

Have you overshot your orbit?

This hand of yours, that holds so many things with delicacy and force,

was once a flailing flipper.

You remember the days when you couldn’t pinch an inch

a single crumb

between your fingers.

Ideas scatter from your plate.

You are running on thick sand.

You are running on sliding gravel.

Reactions spill from you like kapok from a seat cushion.

Don’t try to hold back your mutant blood.

Flashback to warm seas and happenstance,

Brownian motion that guided chance

to land you on this shore.

Slick wet and salty from the shock of it,

you know you will adapt.

Everything is edges.

You hold back a cough against the fulcrum

hoping that the beach will untilt.

In the next breath you will compensate, plant your feet firm on land,

make a path forward.

This breath stays. It is meant for strangeness,

a line of invisible ink in matter’s long inventory.

You feel the suddenness in your chest cavity. Before you straighten

You say a prayer in passing

to the unbalanced instant.

This poem is also used in a piece by The Sound of Traffic, called “Adaptation”
“Adaptation” live recording at San Fran Bathhouse, Wellington




Here’s a collaborative performance with Darren Inwood, from this year’s Kerouac Effect performance in Wellington. I combined my words with Darren’s electronic wizardry (and a little violin) and this is the result.

words below:


When the wind erodes my sermons
When the chapped rocks cry for shelter
Bring water sweet and molten
Drumming on plastic
When sky blends with sea in mourning
When my eyes distort from staring
Bring gales to whip up horses
Distant herding billows
When I stand in cooling shallows
When I skim stones in long hollows
Bring flat greywacke for my sockets
Coins for tides turning
When the path has fooled the shepherd
When footfalls tatter hillsides
Bring a green sweet-pea promise
Fresh dresses for the solstice
When the swift scree rough and tumbles
When the tall cliffsides threaten
Bring bushes tough and hardy
To cushion children
When the waiting tins gape empty
When skinks scatter like slick commas
Bring butterflies in warm hands
Swift flecks flitting
When the seashell will not open
When the hand is cold that hungers
Bring soft-bellied schools
Silver and sand-dollars
When the day grows thin and listless
When its orange turns to ashes
Bring driftwood that dances
Circles warm with stories