Spring 2018

2018

2017

Three poems

By Hebe Kearney

Kevin Rabalais
© Kevin Rabalais

Karen Carpenter

*

skeleton-woman —

i am sorry.

*

the clock has left you,

your eyeballs empty pits

where the light goes in.

*

you are

cracked marble, fissured obsidian,

a network of crisscrosses broken,

and you should be whole, brimming

*

a round-faced moon,

a silver silken shadower, night

cast about you, woven around you,

breathing so full of life, wonder and

delicate powdery moths,

a sweet scent on the breeze

of the perfume even, now, you wear

in the other version of your story

*

the one where the postman waited, stopped,

produced the sacred letter.

where 1983 came and went freely.

where you ballooned into comfortable, wealthy old age,

*

another version of your story,

star-woman,

where you survived it all

and were radiant in your survival

*

Glanville Terrace

*

the rich walk their manicured dogs in Parnell

underneath the magnolias and topiaries

electric gates swing open as if for ghosts

and in the silence

staunch bungalows correct their posture

against the peachy morning sky

*

the clouds are only skim foam on god’s latte

smeared wide by godly sip,

all composure, our only sky

is the one he delegates us

*

and below it

the dogwalkers trot pleasantly

on springloaded sneakers

as if treading on cloud

*

and I, barefoot,

in the centre of the road,

the ghost of sickness;

*

gowned, a ragged stick shape,

viewing the dawn with clinical eyes,

dissecting myself into the tarseal, leaving

*

fine jewels of bright blood shining

on the pampered grass verges

*

Kim

*

How easily you go.

*

Swallow the black pill

make your eyes demon eyes,

dilate them, disappear from behind them,

leave only a shell

*

a husk of your skin,

who walks as you walk

seems as you seem

and is not.

*

Tell me,

what inside you snapped this time?

Which creature claws at your heart?

Which lies, now, does the sea-witch whisper you?

*

Tell me,

have you heard them before?

*

It has been so many years

of listening to them, of grabbing hold

and not even one

of letting go —

*

Forgive yourself.

*

Surrender to being better

and laugh open the dawn.

About Hebe Kearney

Hebe Kearney grew up in Christchurch, but now calls West Auckland her home. She is an undergraduate student in History and Classics at the University of Auckland. She couldn't stop writing poems if she tried.