I am so pleased and so proud to be among these fabulous poets whose poems have been chosen as the best poems published in NZ in 2017!
Click on the picture to go to the bnzp 2017 contents page and enjoy the wonderful poetry!
Early in April I printed one of my poems – waterlines – at MOTAT. I designed and handset it, and it was printed on a Heidelberg Platen by Ian Barnes. It is a limited edition of 37 copies which I am selling to fundraise for a number of photopolymer plates for some other letterpress poetry projects I have coming up.
I’m selling the prints for $10 (a total bargain for a letterpress art print!) plus postage. Get in touch if you’d like a copy.
Thank you to New Zealand Pacific Studios; this poem began while I was staying at Normandel House as the Ema Saikō fellow in Nov/Dec last year.
Since finalising the new jobbing typecase for setting in te reo Māori late last year, I’ve been plodding along setting bits and pieces. Namely the MOTAT Māori language booklet for te wiki o te reo Māori (11th – 17th September ’17) and a poem by Vaughan Rapatahana.
But in the lead up to tēnei wiki, I’ve been chatting to people about the project and what printing in te reo means for me. Below are two recent videos about the case and letterpress printing in te reo Māori.
This is an animated interview with the excellent and talented Sam Orchard! He’s such a great interviewer, I was so at my ease! Thanks Sam!
And this next one is a video from MOTAT, where they filmed what I’ve been getting up to in the print room (I was way more nervous for this one!)
I’ve just returned to Auckland from a research jaunt to the Hocken Library in Dunedin. I went there to look at artwork by Cilla McQueen in their pictorial collection.
The forever muffle in my ears (they don’t cope well with the altitude when flying!) provided a kind of sound proofing to concentrate on the huge quantity of work they have by Cilla McQueen. I went to look specifically at her experimental music and sound scores. I had no idea just how many (and how awesome!) artist books McQueen has made. They are often large-scale and short run (between 1 and 10, but usually around 6). The binding is wondrous. Sometimes very conspicuous, such as with ‘Spine-Tingler,’ for others the outside acts as a folder with the binding covered by hessian, silk strips of other fabrics. They are all made with high quality paper with absolute care to binding and presentation. Each one is individually drawn and hand printed using litter stamps. They’re not printed! Every copy must vary considerably.
Most of the artist books are soundscapes with titles like “Inside the Peninsula, Songs for 5 voices.” Other single page soundscapes have great titles too: “two people fall silent for four seconds during ten seconds of conversation among five people in a crowded room.”
It was an invigorating and inspiring trip, both from academic and creative perspectives. Watch this space for some McQueen inspired artist books.
BMP editor Doug Poole has just launched issue 42 and it’s a ripper!
My parents gave me an audio recorder for Christmas and so I put togetther some audio poems and sent them in to BMP. Doug liked them and so they have been included in this issue alongside some super top notch poets.
Ngā mihi nui ki a Doug Poole rāua ko Penny Howard.
Click on the image to go straight to issue 42.
It’s LOUNGE time of year again! I’m reading alongside amazing poets and writers on March 29th. I’m especially excited to be reading alongside Frankie McMillan. My Dad bought me The Bag Lady’s Picnic and other stories for Christmas in 2001. I got a hammock for Christmas that year too. We set it up and I read every story on Christmas day sitting in that hammock.
The amazing Andrea Rivas has translated three of my poems into Spanish for the journal CÍRCULO DE POESÍA.
Gendered Poetics / Poéticas de género
How we land / Cómo llegamos a tierra
Mother / Madre
I don’t have a word of Spanish. But I do know that translation is quite a feat. I know what goes into it, and how involved with a poem the translator has to be. And so I am honoured that Andrea has given my poems that attention and that energy to bring them to a new audience.
Aurally, it is quite fun to look at these new poems (because they are new poems, these versions are as much by Andrea as they are by me – co-authored!)
In particular the ending of ‘Mother’ which ends
and ‘Madre’ ends
Which becomes less sinister and more guttural. I love it!
I’ve been thinking a lot about mapping, map-making, cartography and mark-making recently. A whole bundle of thoughts going into reading poems as verbal maps. But I’ve also been thinking about the futility of mapping. There are quandaries as to what we consider mappable. The biggest obstacle in our way of thinking about maps is our insistence on a ‘true map.’ Such a ‘true map’ must be of a physical place and must fit within our expectations what a map -is- and also what is should look like, i.e. like google maps or wises road maps.
This is a very rigid way of looking at space but also a rigid way of looking at time and experience, which are also very mappable.
This is a recent poem that regards the futility of the ‘true map’.
Mapping the Coast
I walk toe to heel along the lines drawn
of the place in which I now stand. The lines’ representation
I know that the line I am on was meant to be
a coastal line.
But the coast is neither here nor there. The tracing
of a pencil
craggy along an un-walked shore
hides the tides.
Beneath my feet is the intermediary of
land and sea.
The lapping of white frothed seawater licks
at my feet
as it does, the coastal line is drawn closer
to the shore
as the sea recedes, leaving bubbles between my toes, the line
goes with it.
In the dry air
brimming broken rings
to soar the bell beat
to climb in air and
drift the lake’s edge
The new cold quarrelling
a close stirring
as though solid
dead to mind
not being dead
until that thought.
That day loosened them
a swift, more listless blue
of waves cut edges sharp
her little feet
a new arrangement