Title: Sport 39: 2011

Publication details: Fergus Barrowman, 2013, Wellington

Part of: Sport

Conditions of use



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Sport 39: 2011

Geoff Cochrane

page 125

Geoff Cochrane

The Last of Bashö

Bashö writes of the purple wine he likes.
Of the barman’s slim syringe and black nail-polish.
Of the ten-dollar note burning in the ashtray.
Of the silver airship moored above the pines,
the tethered airship going nowhere slowly.

The snide sirens dive and the rain catches fire,
but what of the Bengal engine’s mango afterglow?

Bashö alone and walking some high path.
Bashö alone and climbing the concrete steps to heaven,
a flask of gin in his satchel.
A flask of gin and a spring roll gone cold.

page 126


If it might fairly be said that you have
hopes and fears, would you say you
have more hopes than fears, or more
fears than hopes? Padgett Powell

For summer seems always more or less sudden.
For the wild geranium is coral-pink.
For my little bit of garden hasn’t flourished.
For monarch butterflies enliven the morning.
For they do this silently, but silently.
For the birds out there look angular and fell.
For I’ll be sixty next birthday.
For I haven’t stopped smoking yet.
For the tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.
For Gerry has moved into his new pad.
For Moonbiscuit Smith is singing sweet and low.
For Moonbiscuit plays the ancient billabong.
For Gerry’s yellow tuk-tuk is dotted with tiny decals.
For people no longer read Jorge Luis Borges.
For summer’s rusty gravels are enduring.
For summer’s orange lichens are abiding.

page 127

Pinksheet #7

for Denis O’Connor

Haloed lamps in a misty, sodden park.
Canticle and psalm and holy smoke.
The white noise in the cabin
dissolves, absolves, dissolves …
The black light in the cockpit
absolves, dissolves, absolves …
‘One should always travel in a business suit.’