Peter Bland – Dropping things

Bland LE Aotearoa NZ P&W April 2023

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Live Encounters Aotearoa New Zealand Poets & Writers April 2023

Dropping things, poems by Peter Bland

Dropping things

OK, it comes
With age. What’s
Barely touched
Or anxiously clutched
Too easily falls
To the floor. My
Zen master says
I’m not to fret
As it’s only a letting go
Of the known. Such
A gentle soul, giving
Both age and gravity
Their due. So I’ve ditched
My pick-up stick
To spend more time
Among dead moths
And broken pots
And the rich history
Of a fallen world.

Late autumn….

And an old anxiety,
A shift to damp shadows
And falling leaves. There’s
A hint of rot
In the fruit I eat
And a growing aloneness
That comes close
To remorse. I’ve been here
Many times before. It’s
Where moons loom
And people leave. Mists
Gather behind my eyes.
I wrap each day round me
Like an old coat.

Going to seed

There’s a need for order
When living alone
But, for the moment,
Chaos wins. Birds
Desert a broken birdbath
To gorge on seeds
From the many weeds
That riot down
Forgotten paths. I’ve come
To prefer an outcast beauty
Among golden centipedes
And pearly snails
And the breezy timing
Of dandelion clocks.

© Peter Bland

Now in his 90th year Peter Bland has been a leading New Zealand poet for over 60 years. He also occupies a distinguished place in New Zealand theatrical history as the co-founder of Wellington’s Downstage theatre. He has an international reputation for his poetry, receiving The Prime Minister’s Award for Poetry, a British Society of Author’s Award, and a Melbourne Festival Literary Award. He lives in Auckland, where he regularly. Reads his work on Facebook.

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