S  e  c  r  e  t  s    blackmail press 24
Chris Parsons
New Zealand

Chris Parsons is a New Zealander who taught English as a second language
in Japanese Colleges and Universities for six years. He now works and lives
in Christchurch. His poems have appeared in Auckland Poetry, Black Mail
Press, Jaam, the Otago Daily Times, Snorkel, and Southern Ocean Review.


Near the water
is where we
say goodbyes

this beach's

charts soft
of passed lives

a Korora
(blue penguin - Eudyptula minor)
left alone

withered vulnerable
sandy dry like

a storm petral
(Oceanites maorianus)
healthy looking even now

my father's honed
face headed steady
into yet another wind

two tiny Kuaka
(bar-tailed godwit - Limosa lapponica)
our twins

lost journeying
across inner and
outer continents

ebony-eyed shag
(Phalacrocorax varius)
its pupil's reflecting

turning tidal light
hurrying me
into a last

dive through
darker waters
of reflection

as gulls
gone gone gone

Leaving Mercury

I'm hankering for a cold zone,
where I can kick back
on something solid. 'Cause out here
the lead's running hot and I'm uneasy

about the sun, a huge blowtorch of a
world balanced on the
horizon, about to roll
over the edge any minute.

I want a change
Of atmosphere,
to get high on moonshine
and lay down on an air bed.

The clustered beans are floating again
My stubble scratches
the flameproof, airproof suit.
There's no water for laving off

accumulating micro-climates.
My only fellow voyagers,
respirating in silence.

An astronaut knows what sailors
knew, that all travel is
squalor, and that life begins again - arriving
back to tiny universes of the familiar.