Some stones

By | 1 February 2021

to waylay thirst on long distance walks, my tūpuna
carried stones in her mouth. to survive
my tūpuna heeded stories.

i heed & hold, in my mouth, a bush pebble. no taste
but I feel it smooth, round & cool
then warm, saliva pooling.

then nothing. just my clifftop cave mouth
beyond water table & sea level,

i feel my mandelbrot gums self-opening.
this clay crumbled mouth crying

I heed & hold like an uri: be the stone,
smooth & mute, not the tongue.
want nothing.

then, like other ancestors, i swallow it.
take it into deeper organs. pebble
becomes kākā stone

fetched up from avian gullet, with avian powers
accrued down there.
i’ll have those.

& if it isn’t all absorbed by my tissue,
my bones, eventually i’ll
shit it out.

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