Posted on 20 March, 2012


There is something wrong with the ocean. It becomes rough. The sailors have binocular eyes pointed at a low bank of grey cloud on the hairline of horizon. Mountains. If I look to the north I can pretend we’re still far at sea. But land has a siren call. It pulls your focus and your eyes fling themselves into the water and swim towards it – drowning.

New Zealand grows like a storm. Tom and I are glued to the bridge. In the ‘thermo king’ containers, meat cools. The hospital grade uranium glows gently. The grey land cloud develops into colour. White cliffs, ridges. Just before the South Island there is a haze of spray. Or fog. Or dream.

A bird with black islands on its wings dips into view. Hours later I go out onto the deck to see the flooded river valleys of the Marlborough Sounds. The bird is still there. I know it’s the same bird because of the cheeky flap of its wings beating land, land, land. Image

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