By | 1 February 2019


Those bitches at school can get fucked now
I’m an actress, I’ve made something of my life

lives alone in a bush hut without electricity
rats run over the food she leaves lying around
bags of clothes and a loaf of mouldy bread
stashed under the porch

fifteen hundred kilometres from Invercargill to Picton
takes the ferry, misses the connection in Rotorua
loses her bag forever in Tauranga
arrives frayed and worn as an intercity bus tyre

above our heads gulls sweep low along the beach
the sound of the ocean and rhythm of the waves
does little to lift the swelling angst –
was her medication in the bag?

a cosy room, clean sheets and comfy bed
hot roast dinner with all the trimmings
she devours it, takes a second helping
You’ve always been mean to me

she pecks at my crumbling composure
with therapists’ jargon
Are you sure you wanted to pick me up?
Did you have an issue with that?

buses to Auckland to catch her flight to London
leaves her passport under the bed in Nelson
the jumbled suitcase overweight with essentials
false boobs, high heels and beauty treatments


she’s eight, we watch Fantasia for the third time that day
hiding behind the couch, her eyes wide
the Easter bunny a tormenter
at the fair she screams for silence

she’s a teenager, won’t touch door handles
Towels have a lot of bacteria
on the train the panicked call to Nan
she doesn’t know where she is

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