A Little Easter Poem

pastures green

The righteous
will flourish in the courts of the King,
they will bear fruit
fresh and green,
“The LORD is upright
he is my Rock
the Rock of my salvation

And the earth shook, the rocks split
as the King of Glory
gave his all, suffered death
parting Kingdom’s curtain

for us
the sentenced
to walk in
and sit at the throne
beside quiet waters
and pastures green
and worship
our precious
and beautiful

Union Jack

(the national flag of the United Kingdom)

If we had Royal Mail
then I would pop the Jack in an envelope
and send it back to where it belongs.

The Union was and is British.
Aotearoa was quite clear
that it didn’t want the flood
of red, white and blue.

Almost two hundred and fifty years later
we still pay the price
of having someone else’s flag
rule over our own.

I know you can’t go home
but at least respect our suffering
and leave our flag alone.

The Dusty Finger Tour

P1020761I think I what will remember most about this tour will be my cold, shingles and the late nights.

It was wonderful to do another tour in English and a first language.
I started in a very cool pub venue in Ipswich with a very small turnout and an audience who enjoyed politics.

P1020620The next morning greeted me with a pub breakfast and peaceful train trip north to Norwich.

The small afternoon youth gig in Norwich was a delightful challenge and well worth the effort. The evening gig was exceeding well planned, resulting in a packed venue and enthusiastic crowd. This was definitely my best ever English gig.


IMG_8283-01After breakfast my host drove me to ‘holding-pen’ Stansted where I flew north. After a lovely afternoon dog-walk I played to the home-crowd of Glasgow. It was a house gig with friends where I dragged out my faithful Scottish poetry.photo

P1020663The morn greeted me with good coffee and two northern train trips to a small village south of Perth. This was a lovely afternoon open-fire house gig.


P1020720The last of my northern journeys was a snow laden train excursion to Inverness. After lunch I was blessed with a quick trip monster hunting at Loch Ness. The evening was spent with a warm audience in the Sunset Cafe.

P1020724My journey south was absorbed by a delayed train and a very drunk Highlander mourning his dead cat. The evening in West Kilbride was spent reading around a candle-lit table flanked by a roaring fire.

P1020764After a very late night I was driven to Ayr where I managed a morning snooze and a spot of shopping before performing in front of a very responsive crowd in a very packed Su Casa cafe.

P1020789 (2)By the morning I was quite sick and shared this with a plane load of people flying to Derry city. It was a lovely Northern Irish day worth the coastal road to Coleraine. I shared the evening in Kiwi’s Brew Bar with excellent musicians. Unfortunately my fuzzy-head-cold left my performance a bit flat.

P1020813More snow on the morning’s drive to Belfast. Lovely train as I headed south. Dublin the final event was a house gig with a fun loving crowd. The Dusty Finger Tour finished just before midnight. I had a good long sleep before an Ulster Fry, walk through the village and celebratory Guinness.

P1020883 (3)I think what struck me the most on this tour was the quality of the audiences. I met so so many good people. Thanks so much to my hosts who did a such a good job or organising things.

this to you

(an ode to a city)


resonators resonate

slush slides

flakes flutter

zebras glow

orphans cry

crises die

Putin prances

guns turret

coffee pouts

dosh paves
white streets

& no one cares

to you

NATO Nation

The Doubtful Sound Tour

Venturing north into the sunny and snowy wilderness of Norway was quite an adventure. ‘The Doubtful Sound Tour’ was by far the most difficult to organise, with some gigs and accommodation being confirmed at the very last minute. Norwegian culture was fascinating, the people were very easy to warm to and the scenery was absolutely stunning.

P1230925Gig 1 was in Kristiansand and was preluded by a feed of stir-fry veggies and cod caught a few hours earlier. It was lovely to have some friends at the gig and a little fun to discover that people were waiting for me to sing. Kristiansand was a steep learning curve for performing in Norway. Very quickly I was aware people were responding positively to my light more humorous stories and visibly shrinking away from my more gritty darker poetry. This was the same for most of my Norwegian gigs and is perhaps good practice for when I next perform in New Zealand.

P1230966Gig 2 was a short distance away, which gave me time for a quiet walk to the sea near Skjernø and a chance to feed my Kiwi soul and stand barefoot on the wild rocks in my host’s back yard. The gig in Skjernø (Mandal) was my smallest and perhaps most intimate. I really like small gigs where I can interact with the people.

Because I was not able to secure either a gig or suitable accommodation, the next day left me driving 14 hours through, sun, snow and driving rain. I was very tired when I arrived at my hosts in Ålesund and was instantly made welcome.

P1240006Gig 3 gave me 30 minutes as part of an ‘Open Mike Night’. The crowd had been quite noisy during the other performers. I opened with ‘Emo’, from there on through the audience seemed to be captivated, laughing, clapping and sighing on cue.

P1240074A short ferry trip the following day brought me to Sykkylven, with a little spare time to talk and see a bit of the country side.

Gig 4 had music and quite a variety of people, it was an easy gig in front of a very welcoming group of people.

P1240118The next day had me on three more ferries and some icy roads. I was greeted at my host’s home by kids with snowballs, it was fun to finish my drive with a snow fight.

P1240151My final gig in content was quite similar to the evening before, but was very different in execution. I am always a bit freer on my last night and having music and meeting in a basement church just seemed to make things easier and more interactive. I finished the evening with a feed of elk.

P1240166Finally it was time to start the three day journey home. This included an overnight stay in Oslo and a night on the ferry to Klaipeda.

To conclude, I think I was quite different for Norway and that people neither new what to expect or what to make of my gigs. Norway was undoubtedly fun and often left me struggling to perform with a straight face. Next year I hope to return to Scandinavia and build on the things that Norway taught me.

Thank you to all those who helped me organise this trip, thanks to my hosts and a specially thanks to all of you who turned up to listen, I very much enjoyed my tour of Norway.


becoming men

bucolic backyard
green grass girded by
tired toi toi, shiny flax and thirsty gum

dirty bare legs, arms and feet
slapping, clashing, thudding
chasing oval ball

boys, dad and uncle battle it out
in time honoured ritual
ball bounces against the house
kids scream ‘out’

grandad proudly sits
on shaded sideline
sucking his Speight’s through
yellow decaying teeth
shouting & spitting the score

burnt white skin
Otago sun slides
behind black beech
filtered memories
and boys becoming men