Ah! Lady Grey tea,
fragrant, red-gold, freshly made –
a French glass teacup.


On the table, soldiers of wholegrain toast spread with butter and marmalade. Antidote for a troubling dream – scrambled shards of memory, gasps of grief long ago abandoned.

Borne again

Waterlilies soar to the water's surface craving sunlight, copyright © Michel Loup

Waterlilies soar to the water’s surface craving sunlight, copyright © Michel Loup

Diving into a
dirty pool deep enough
to drown in: spluttering,

I swallow down my
childhood memories, afloat
on this flimsy film.

The Hobbit: 3 days to go

“Hobbit stamps, Hobbit coins and Hobbit markets are all in the works as the city of Wellington, New Zealand, prepares for the world premiere of ‘The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey’ on Nov 28.” (Mark Johanson, writing in the International Business Times, 10 Oct 2012)

3 days to go #1 (25 Nov 2012)

3 days to go #1 (25 Nov 2012)

“The film is the first in a trilogy, with director Peter Jackson returning to JRR Tolkien’s novels after his hit adaptations of Lord Of The Rings.” Subtitled ‘An Unexpected Journey’, the film stars British actors Martin Freeman and Sir Ian McKellen. (BBC News : Entertainment & Arts, 08 Oct 2012)

I snapped these shots this morning on my way to work. (The Embassy Cinema, on Wellington’s Cambridge Terrace, is just a few minutes’ walk from my apartment.)

3 days to go #2 (25 Nov 2012)

3 days to go #2 (25 Nov 2012)

Be natural … be yourself

A great deal of effort seems to go into the quest for the self — or, at least, a great deal of talk centres around the topic.

When you get to thinking about it, though, that’s just us being ourselves!

As John Weeren wrote recently:

no practice is needed
to be yourself
you’re you no matter what

Another thing: life is empty and meaningless …

If you want your life to mean something, it’s entirely up to you.

The only unnatural act is the one that cannot be performed. (William S Burroughs, Alfred Kinsey, et al)

Certainly nothing is unnatural that is not physically impossible. (Richard Brinsley Sheridan)


Shadow self

In dark dreams sometimes
a darker, raunchier self
emerges, prowling —
When do I get to spend some
time alone with you? he asks.

Dark power emanates
from him — harsh tang of musk, clang
of polished steel on
steel, magnetic fields clash and
collide, lips and stubble meet.

Revised version, posted 13 August 2011  

A mix of dream and discourse

With my strong editorial background, it’s almost inevitable that one of my favourite games — for the want of something better to do — is one I’ve dubbed Spot the Blue Pencil.

Mind you, I don’t seem to get many chances to rack up seriously high points (unlike Facebook Scrabble). But a couple of days ago I did, I believe, score a major Bingo.

I was reading the latest issue of ArtNews New Zealand, p13 — a preview piece for Hen’s Teeth, an exhibition of work by painter Joanna Braithwaite:

“Her work uses the power of the gaze to arrest, ask and question. A conversation begins which is a mix of dream, political, social, religious and environmental discourse.” (ArtNews New Zealand, Autumn 2011)

What on earth does that mean? I asked myself. It was time to play that game again.

What did the author write? 

Here’s my guess:

“A conversation begins which is a mix of dream and discourse — political, social, religious, environmental.”

Okay, the dash might be considered a trifle florid. What else could one use? — a colon? 

But the real question is: What did the editor make it mean?

Your guess is as good as mine.

Hen’s Teeth is at Milford Galleries Dunedin, 18 Dowling Street, Dunedin, from 30 April to 25 May 2011. For more information visit .