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On the eighth day

In the desert she bore
water. Her manicured hands remembered

mine were beautiful in engine oil.

Every eighth day she came: seven days of silence
when all I possessed were memories.

I’d hold my breath to listen better. In the end

no star is worth losing
a few hours sleep to see: the rescuing

dawn was more real than my solitude

in a land of mirages. Sand
swallowed what little imagination I had

left. Her aeroplane was only ever going
to circle


Early 1996, Belmont Terrace, Auckland


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