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You say its your birthday well its my birthday too

when I drew your heart
on the card I drew

parentheses: I was not

inside: my desire was
the curve of a bird’s wing


light: that bird
I trapped as a boy

tried to blind me: you were


in this small country
this small boy sings

the only experience is overseas

neither loved nor loving
I am nearly American

my mouth describes
what it cannot kiss


calling your name
my tongue does not discover

the way in

sneaky feelings tell hard love stories
now you cross your legs

an artful starlet tossing me
ever-after glances


only the innocent can be
one with you: unaware

while gas ripens the apple

memory is a lecher’s prompter
I wear this designer skin: you can

undo every receptor: I am tired of

trying to be one
my pale miracle

with these words
We’re gonna have a good time


you moved through a Mt Eden bedroom
along the opening sentence of a novel

We came to the city in early summer

the dusk tucked under your left eyelid
the dawn indexed with your ring finger

another birthday to drink away

on the card I drew this tree, this wick
an oiled wrestler

overturning the world

in black ink
this tree, this wick

shivering with lightning

an oiled wrestler
turning the world over


on a bullock’s back
on a hillock’s lick



with the sadness of large spaces
We’re gonna have a good time

the particular feels allegorical

digesting an accent
spitting echoes

as the sea describes
infinity to the bitter harbour


calling your name
his tongue invents your flesh

the way out

how you cross your heart
how you cross this nought

off your designer world
dark laughter swarming with dwarf stars


right, God can’t be
among the streetwalkers

exile has its pleasures but where

virgin without worldly accessories
unpick the stitching

holding body to soul

take me to pieces
capillary by capillary

with your tongue
Take a cha-cha-cha-chance


cutting through millions of streaky windows
to an hour-glass figure in Santa Barbara

Yes we’re going to a party

your right eyeball orbiting my dream
the real McCoy curling your belly

then I drew your heart in black ink

shivering with lightning
the curve of a bird’s wing

turning the world

19–26.11.1992, Cathedral Square, Christchurch


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