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Sport 35: Winter 2007

Here's the Nose and Here's the Belly

Here's the Nose and Here's the Belly

after Allen Curnow's Introduction to A Book of New Zealand Verse, 1923–45

Precedent, here or elsewhere,
Has been no guide in planning this poem.
I'm cutting my losses
And providing some ground
Upon which the worth of the verse
Can be estimated.
Only in that way can we get nearer
The traditional relationship.
I have tried to include,
To serve, in NZ, what I take
To be the purpose of good verse
In any country. The reasons why
Are displayed more amply
Than is usual, simply that we have
Many. Their works need to be read.