Orini, that fertile garden
watered well with fallen tears,
recalling, the mighty Waikato
running high beneath Taupiri Mountain.
I see Korus in the ears of dear friends
waving Nikau fronds for me and twisting
crimson Rata forming forest
arteries pulsing from the hearts of Totara.
Rangiriri’s graven stones covering
bones from battles fought
with thoughts inscribed.
Manuka crowns this mound
rising from the smooth black silk –
as iron-sands consume my sinking feet
darkening Te Henga’ coast
with each wild heart-beat from the sea.
This necklace of memories
claims my throat and rocks my belly still.
This place, of satin stones where Tuis sing –
where tremors rise from far below,
Te Kauwhata – an empty storehouse now –
this place where Rimu trees and Kauri grow
shaped this skeleton – beneath my transient skin
like lingering mists – recallinging what I know
Huia’s sacred hymns in deep bushlands –
More-pork’s calling through
© 2013 finish
The beauty of the Maori names -linked to the nearby places where I lived or visited as a child in the Waikato region, provoke precious memories of these places where I was born,recalling the many aspects of my origin, and of those dear friends who still welcome me with open arms.