turbine 03
Turbine 03
Hinemoana Baker
James Brown
Kate Camp (audio)
Megan Dunn
Jane England
Ian Finch
Ingrid Horrocks
Chris House
Anna Jackson
Tim Jones
Laura Kroetsch
Kirsten McDougall (audio)
Mary Macpherson
Rick Moody
Naomi O’Connor
Esther Quin
Rossella Riccobono (audio)
Virginia Were
Louise Wrightson
Letter From Iowa

Hinemoana Baker

Work by this Author:
   As a Child

As a Child

Because you have olive skin, she says to me, you should wear black, not white. I was a seer. I haven’t seen it yet. I suspect that someone else is driving. The main character: duplicitous, confused, mad. I have no desire to go to America. I write a book with seven chapters, there is a shipwreck in five of them.

If I could be anyone. I search out a plastic bowl from the cupboard, brown with white polka dots you can feel. I fill it with water and, dipping a fine toothed, orange comb, I wet my long hair from root to tip. Kua noho kūare ahau. I admire the radio. I feel approachable, singing Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star. It is practically swimming out of me.

I lift the portable typewriter onto a wobbly stool on our front steps. A tumbling waterfall of fluorescent orange light around her. Stories of Jehovah, eighty words per minute. After school photographs I say to my mother What are those funny lights around people? Tihei mauri ora. Tihei māori ora. It makes people envious.

I sit on a step in the sun and type, the whole book in red because the black stripe. Silver, not gold. Dwindling as I get older. Trying to draw with crayon on my arm. I can’t get the hang of metres.

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