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Writing Wellington: Twenty Years of Victoria University Writing Fellows

City Sunday

page 12

City Sunday

The jaunty straws, the Sunday hats
Stroll blandly from the Government flats,
Their plastic fruit and flowers of glass
On heads as dark as beaten brass
Gleam in the sun: sedate beside
Blue suits, white collars, quietly stride.

Ahead of them, like nylon fawns,
Two skirted children eye the lawns
For weekday running: now green grass
Wears an ironshod word—'Trespass.'
But like cicadas in the trees
The band ahead has news to please.

Its solemn notes rise thin and clear
Upon the neutral Sunday air
Where even buses learn to mute
The rancour of their usual route
And rising bush absorbs all sound
Before it gets above the ground.

One pair of high heels on the path
Creates the only hint of wrath
To crack the windows of this view
As goes a girl, all limbs, and new
To old designs and repetitions
That may restore the lost positions.

But she has vanished through the trees
And eyes revert through stone degrees
As the band turns the page to surge
Onwards through its ponderous dirge,
And suits and hats arise, resume
Their walk, then home to habit's room.