Thursday, May 01, 2014

Purau
by
John Riminton


Conceived in volcanic violence
I was born of fire and water,
a softer valley between basalt cliffs
now I am loved in times of tranquil peace.

Lichens came first, softening my just-cooled rocks.
Forerunners of the miracle wind-born soil
accepting the travelled seeds of plants
to mantle me and make a home for birds.

I watched the first canoes exploring bays
taking fresh water from my sparkling streams.
Fish flax and birds - the means for human life
to settle, rest and weave away the days.

Violence again, this time of men.
Wars, raids on land, slaughter of whales at sea.
More human changes - roads homes and farms
seeking my peace and strong protecting arms.

What lies ahead?
A flooded shore? Homes on my slopes?
10,000 years from now my cliffs will still be here.
Who will be here to share?




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