Jessie Puru
New Zealand

Karakia Precari - Penny Howard 2016
Jessie Puru is a Māori poet who lives in Auckland with her daughter. She has recently completed her degree in Creative Writing at Manukau Institute of Technology.


I remember your elbow opening my left eye to the stars
with sharp inhale I smell the bourbon
and I swear my heart drops
my grip loosens on the steering wheel
behind me is the misted rear windscreen
rippling drunk skin
the sagging roof fabric above me

I remember nothing
no change to my breathing
but my heart skips a beat with her stupid lie
my hands by my side where they should be
nothing behind me, only ahead
liar liar I did nothing
all that is above anything is me
I remember nothing.


My dog Singh
forced my father up a tree

She would growl
at the flickers of men

but would let me ride on her back
like a horse.