Wednesday Busk

    • Tiger Country

      Published on May 11, 2022

      Kia ora koutou, I’ve been asked, as a favour, to publish this poem again on the Busk. It’s a while since the first time (and it is in my memoir) but hey, thanks for the kind words and yes, I agree, poems need to be read and read (and read) again so… here it is…

      Tiger Country

      You plunge off the cliff into Tiger Country
      sleek and smiling tigers play hide and seek
      slope around abandoned chairs, sad tables
      silk cushions call encouragement from the sofa
      an old painting turns its face to the wall.

      Tigers lurk in old cards, beneath yours forever
      snooze under Christmas lights that never worked
      lope ahead to a destination only they know
      signposts are suspect; there is no tunnel, no light
      nobody pins a tail on these tigers.

      Some nights after the sun has flamed
      and seabirds search the pastures of the sea
      tigers come out and lean gentle over your chair –
      wrap you in a striped shawl of sturdy warmth
      fold their paws and purr soft in the silent room

      This is the danger time. Stand up. Walk slow.
      Their eyes are on the game and you’re It.