Rome wasn't built in a day.

But you aren't Rome.

You are Timaru at best.

With expired resource consents

and an impatient local body.


So we’ll trudge slow

Along Mount Horrible

With sweaty thumbs and

Nails bitten to the quick.

Together we’ll grab some rope and pick and pick and


pull at each thread 

be careful not to get a strand


around your finger 

if it is too tight 

you will cut off the circulation 

and you will lose the ability to grasp


make a string of

your teeth

wear them at your first love’s


paint them gold after a year

and plant them behind the rhubarb


you won’t act surprised

when only weeds grow

and the rhubarb goes to seed.

Your soil dry

and the seasons



till the night
a wrinkled juniper
breaks through dirty halogen
and the neighbours shout
from their hives


Sweet in hail  
breath with 
out any ex
mist en ghosted mass 
that honey lick smell of 
pavement sw(eat) under heel 
under heels
un- do-ur close door 
at foot


the flowers are inside              trying to kill you

deliver me         from amateur         stems

etude            to the empty firm             a ment

of petals in the hotel               sink forced            open