Title: Sport 39: 2011

Publication details: Fergus Barrowman, 2013, Wellington

Part of: Sport

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Sport 39: 2011

Brent Kininmont

page 128

Brent Kininmont

The God Question

Where do the hands go when
they keep to themselves?

Here, it turns out—
the woods behind the grounds

of the temple.
A spot where one imagines

both would come to rest.
Palms receiving

needles from the cedars,
my body large as

each thumb—not quite
touching the fingers.

No sign of the Giant
severed. Nothing

but the hands open
to suggestion.

page 129

Seto Ohashi Bridge

for Sanae

We walked until
late afternoon,
looking for leaps

in imagination,
legs straining against
the trail of hills,

the notebook folded
into my pocket.
Then, out of the air

in this train
coming back,
a line writes itself

between islands,
one thought leading
to another,

about the audacity
of steel, say,
how it carries on

over tankers, trawlers,
that ferry down there—
the one, perhaps,

we had rushed
to catch, but missed
the connection.

page 130

Degree of Empathy Required

The Department of Italian now seeks a lecturer or senior lecturer
(depending on qualifications and experience)
Auckland University

From Tiber’s bank
I spurred on the trio,
ignoring notes her piano

dropped in the water.
She was losing her footing,
slipping into marsh

where the two boys tried to
play woodwind
by blowing into reeds.


If not for the break
I found in the fence about
the Roman theatre,

where Greeks had staged
The Wasps (and Sting
played one summer),

that child peddling ‘ancient’ coins
might have followed us
all over Ephesus.


page 131 Full of the red wine of me,
a mosquito in Verona
paused in the space

between acts. I didn’t
snap shut the programme,
bearing in mind

whose blood would be spilled.
The blot in an otherwise
worthy opera.


From one coast to
another, a brick for every
body under Hadrian.

The only other walker,
far as my zoom could see
through drizzle,

wondered would I let him
capture the wall
with nobody on it.