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This poem is taken from PN Review 79, Volume 17 Number 5, May - June 1991.

Five Poems Lauris Edmond
 
POHUTUKAWA

Red; blood-red. Crimson wreaths upon
the branches' royal architraves; stained-
glass sun, sharp against the harbour.

In here, the ghosts of other years,
forgotten festivals - spilt wine, tears,
violent laughter in another room - and

beyond all that the thinner shades, of pagan
gods against their fir tree snow, spring
stirring in the frozen northern ground.

What could we do? We fashioned other idols
- like Guy Fawkes, stuffed with straw - and,
pointing, said 'the family'; 'You must come

home for Christmas.' So it is. We do not know
if we recall, or simply now imagine, that small
eternity of love, a kitchen couch, a clover-
...


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