Max what about a marking snap-must be potential there !!
Cheers Patrick -coming up from being down(touch wood)
From: Poetryetc: poetry and poetics [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On
Behalf Of andrew burke
Sent: 22 October 2008 11:41
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: verse snap: harriers
Liked it, Max, particularly as I was a lonesome long distance runner also -
we called it cross country back then. I think a relative of Herb lapped me
in a mile race once. I didn't say I was any good at it >g<
For those interested in cricket, our inter-school meets used to be held at
the WACA - it had a good 440 parameter track. All gone now of course, in
these days of banked bucket seating and concrete grandstands.
I don't seem to be able to write snaps these days. Too much marking, etc.
When semester ends (soon) I shall start again, I hope.
2008/10/22 Max Richards <[log in to unmask]>
> Harriers, Mount Albert, 1951
> All the other sports would shame me -
> scrums and lineouts against thugs,
> offside rules, ball skills, hard balls
> skinning my fingers or aimed at my face.
> Harriers must be OK - no team to let down,
> no balls, no complicated rules,
> just run and keep running, and if last
> still not much shamed.
> We're in singlets, shorts, and sand-shoes.
> Softspoken Mr Castle requests:
> 'stay in a bunch, at least
> till near the home stretch',
> the harriers set out, duffers like me
> relying on those ahead to know the way -
> out the school gates, uphill
> across the old crater's green turf,
> not so fast the trees can't be enjoyed -
> downhill, wet clay, fearful slithering, out
> into the street beyond - by now the best
> have streamed on way ahead.
> Better to have stopped there and then -
> late afternoon light on the grass,
> slowness of park trees and sky,
> perhaps a rainbow in the east. No, run.
> Chest pain sets in, hoarse panting -
> looking down at my pumping knees,
> their colour's changed from white to red.
> Is anyone behind? slower than me!
> Second wind: strange serenity,
> automatic running, clear head.
> Soon lost - palpitation,
> staggering, near-delirium.
> The rest are long since back at school.
> I totter in, incapable of speech.
> 'Well done,' says kind Mr Castle.
> Soon he will leave science teaching
> (at the blackboard, chalk in both hands -
> he's ambidextrous, look!
> marking out perfect symmetries;
> explaining rainbows, created one)
> to be a potter* - from his wheel and kiln
> mere clay, glazed, is art, lovely and serene.
> Soon I gave up harriers, took up poetry,
> slow trees, the chance of a rainbow.
> *Len Castle, b.1924, New Zealand's foremost potter
> Max Richards
> 22 October 2008
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