to a fisherman & pukeko

to a fisherman & pukeko
31 december 2015
Te Naupata, Musick Point

pukeko
With acknowledgements to the image taker for the image taken

to a fisherman
with his rod whipping
back i thought to ask,
‘what, friend, do you
hope to catch late this
last day of the year?’
the sun of this summer
day just a cool glow now
in grey going out on the
west, the low tide
still running deep in
its channel dark with the
coming evening,
before i asked i already knew
‘the next year at least, the
only sure thing, the only
sure catch’.

walking on up along
that road out to the point
i asked the pukeko
‘what, friend, do you hope
to catch late this last
evening of the year?’
it turned its head toward
me, the one foot lifted,
stilled in mid-step and
told me ‘nothing certain
last day of the year or
not, nothing certain’
and plunged on into
the wind-knocked hay
of that high field

The music accompanying the reading is from the 4th movment of Robert Schumann’s ‘Märchenbilder’ op. 113, interpreted here in a 1985 live performance by Yuri Bashmet (viola) & Sviatoslav Richter (piano).

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