Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Thursday, September 22, 2011


This was taken just before we performed at the variety show. That's me in the front row behind the guitarist. We'd just finished our third rehearsal. I'm all getting ready to sing the back-up to 'twist and shout' and to improvise some dance steps.

This week's links:

Ginger Beer. Sarah Bainbridge
Foxtrot. Andrew Johnston
A Rabbit as King of the Ghosts. Wallace Stevens
Leaf-Girl. . . Kevin Crossley-Holland
VUW involvement in $3B science project strengthened.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Thursday, September 15, 2011


In the school library I find a 1977 reprint of Plath’s first book The Colossus. How northern, almost Irish, the poems sound; all fen-frost and keel and barns—there’s even the poem ‘Hardcastle Crags.’ You'd never guess she was an American. I’ve never liked the term ‘confessional’: read without the baggage of her legend she’s a horror fantasist; she’s Poe’s granddaughter. Just look at the titles ‘Two views of a cadaver Room’, ‘The Ghost’s Leavetaking’, ‘Lorelei.’ Pages 36 to 38 have been carefully removed from the edition so that ‘Mushrooms’ ends “Bland-mannered, asking

This week's links:

1. Aubade. Alvin Pang
2. Singapore pens Asia's longest poem.
3. Facebook is fast becoming irrelevant. Hilton Tarrant
4. When quoting verse, one must be terse. David Orr
5. Whitcoulls withdraws from NZ Bookscan. Mary McCallum

Monday, September 12, 2011

Tuesday Poem: SONNET #43, FROM THE PORTUGUESE By Elizabeth Barrett Browning


By Elizabeth Barrett Browning

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of everyday's
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints!---I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life!---and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.

Friday, September 09, 2011


The new silver touch sensitive keyboard sits in the living room. My mum and dad and my in-laws all chipped in and helped: it's a birthday present for the family. Latika and the two boys have learnt the opening to 'Ode to Joy'. I haven't started yet; three new learners is enough and in my spare time I'm attempting 'Whisky in the Jar' on the ukulele. It's enough for now just to hear them play.

Here's this week's links:

  1. Collaborative Learning for the Digital Age. Cathy N Davidson
  2. Carol Ann Duffy - 'Poems are a form of texting.' Joanna Moorhead
  3. Time's all time top 100 Non-fiction Books.
  4. Blame Vermeer. Vincent O'Sullivan
  5. The Eye-Mote. Sylvia Plath

Monday, September 05, 2011

Tuesday Poem: Sea of Rains

Sea of Rains

McKinnelly called the barn observatory.
Reflector or refractor, we didn’t know
not one of us then had seen the scope
but we'd heard the whir of motors
across the field on full-moon nights
wondered at the aperture in the roof.

Midsummer afternoons when the wind
no longer combed the cornfield
he’d race around the bottom paddock
full pack, hobnailed boots
and not a word out of him
as he sat on his evening pint.

When Fahey found his pony by Dobcross Lane
he wiped his forehead with his handkerchief
and led him back to McKinnelly’s
for a few words about the matter.

Tussock burnt on the top hill
as we called over the farm for him
in the barn a National Geographic map of the moon
with a needle stuck in the Sea of Rains
among the hay a discarded dew cap
and never a word from McKinnelly.

Harvey Molloy

More poems at Tuesday Poem.

Friday, September 02, 2011


This week I sang on stage for the first time in a variety show. I couldn’t see anything but the lights in my eyes and to my ears the mike sounded off. I sang the backing vocals and attempted the dance moves. Notes are easier than steps. Twist and shout. We can work it on out.

This week's links:

Warcraft takes over man's world.
Awesome people reading.
Right on. Vincent O'Sullivan
Traffic Noise. Tom Weston
The Imaginary Museum (ongoing blog). Jack Ross