Selected Poems, 1963-2013
Kevin Ireland lives in Devonport and is one of New Zealand's most prominent and well-loved writers. This is his 20th book of poetry, 50 years after his first book in 1963, Face to Face. His most recent book was Dreamy Days & Nothing Done (2012). He has also published a collection of short stories, Sleeping with the Angels; six novels including Getting Away with It and Daisy Chains; and two memoirs, Under the Bridge and Over the Moon and Backwards to Forwards.
Kevin has won numerous awards, including the 2004 Prime Minister's Award for Literary Achievement and in 2006 the A W Reed Award for his contribution to New Zealand literature. In 2000 he received an honorary doctorate from Massey University. Selected Poems 1963-2013 is published to coincide with and celebrate his 80th birthday.
From "Face to face": Summer evening : Piha ; Autumn evening : Albert Park ; For John Graham : Birkdale ; Michael’s Beach : Haast ; Ash ; Venus ; Each day would end ; Care ; Shadow ; Poem for Joseph McKenney ; Parade : Liberation Day ; Antic Hay ; Lovebird From "Educating the body": A new tune ; Thorn and wind ; Deposition ; A hidden message ; A new man ; Striking a pose ; Running a risk ; Educating the body ; A popular romance ; A modern seduction ; Violence ; A city tune ; Afterthought ; Insurrection : Rewiti Avenue ; Holiday ; Lost cities ; A hard country ; The poor go fishing ; Threnody From "A letter from Amsterdam": An electronic kind of sonnet ; Roses ; Inventing you ; Once when we were taking tea ; A musical lesson ; A letter from Amsterdam ; Catching me out From "Orchids hummingbirds and other poems": Orchids hummingbirds ; A way of sorrow ; A signal to the past ; A new technique ; Talking ; A guide to perfection ; Skin ; Printery ; A birthday card ; Auto-da-fé ; Pastoral ; A tally of my afternoon ; Spring 1971 ; An open door ; Animals and engines ; Thrace ; In memory : Tsvetan Stoyanov ; An act of reading From "A grammar of dreams": Caroline beside the sundial ; The Brazilian geologist ; The extraordinary power of love From "Literary cartoons": A literary condition ; A literary reaction ; The literary man lies in ; Literary revenge ; Literary cartoonist at work ; The literary man becomes fluent ; A literary visitation; The apotheosis of the literary man ; A literary tag ; The literary exile ; The literary convention; The literary man tends a modern garden ; A serious literary slip ; The literary man observes a window to the sky ; The literary man farewells a poem ; A literary testament ; A literary posture From "The dangers of art": A college holiday ; The dangers of art ; A separate surface ; Old troupers ; Girl in a glass case ; The poem that could not be written ; A view from the mind ; Vocations ; The man with the sideways glance ; Common knowledge ; Statements ; A perfect life ; Cloudburst ; The truth of tea-leaves ; A shrinking world ; A new territory ; A memory of Don Terris ; A view from a distance ; Lament for a good man From "Practice night in the drill hall": A matter of difference ; Raffles hotel ; Practice night in the drill hall ; The politics of glory ; The return home ; A circus act ; Expedition to a mountain lake ; A poem for Denis Glover ; A Kuala Lumpur notebook ; Definitions of ourselves From "The year of the comet": 1-4 ; 14-17 ; 18,20 ; 21 ; 24-26 From "Selected poems, 1987": The first tribute ; Autumn in exile ; Magnificat ; The young man in commodities ; A call to the bar From "Tiberius at the beehive": The name of the place ; A tour of parliament ; Political gossip ; An old man on Capri ; Caesar eaten ; Paper and ink ; Political friendship ; Radiant particles ; Enemies of state ; Ministerial apointments ; Hoopla ; The Chinese waiter ; Consider Rome as a brain ; Predicament ; A letter from home ; A soldier’s tale ; Tiberius observes the master of mosaics ; Tiberius recites a political parable ; Walking ; A lesson in politics ; News from a distance ; A final message From "Skinning a fish": Paintings in the Maniototo ; After the rain comes morning glory ; Railway jokes, 1959 ; The English connection ; Pinnacle Ridge, Mt Ruapehu ; Execution of a poet ; Skinning a fish ; A new alphabet ; Pity about the gulls ; King canary, queen cat ; Shifting house ; Paderewski’s hands ; Left for dead ; The investiture ; The protocol of laughter ; The writing life ; A soldier’s song ; Ash Tuesday ; Bad night in Whyalla ; The man with grey hair ; The man who dipped out From "Anzac Day": Anzac Day, Devonport ; Learning the truth ; Clouds on a still day in Byzantium ; Fathers ; Herstory ; A volatile fluid ; Enola Gay; Tyger, tyger ; The skies are falling ; In praise of companionable acts ; Moruroa : the name of the place From "Fourteen reasons for writing": Fourteen reasons for writing ; Questions that must be answered ; A model life ; An unforgettable day ; Walking in the dark ; Cloud ; Conversation with Sarah Quigley in a marquee ; An ode to mighty Sid ; Stormy weather ; Hills, pines, clouds ; Villanelle for a smile ; A villanelle for Daisy ; Death of a hero ; Give us a break, will you? ; Pascal’s sweets ; Awards ; The Roy Dalgarno guide to rules From "Walking the land": Walking the land ; Pool ; The pleasure of error ; Estuary, Wade rivermouth ; Poor calls ; Sailing the world ; A team effort ; The dangers of cities ; The new excelsior ; Here’s thinking of you ; An objection to leaning over backwards ; Great ; Protests to poems ; The problem with poetry ; Why anyone does it ; The boy who cried ’wolf’ ; A whiff of the old Adam ; A poetry anthology as furniture ; Porno ; Being there ; A seasonal thing to be doing ; A recipe for harvests ; The last laugh From "Airports and other wasted days": The inconsolability of airports ; Airports ; The very thought of you ; The very latest defamations ; Starting the day ; A line upon the waters ; Nothing to it ; A different country ; So much for your new year’s message, thanks ; Patterns of play ; Portrait of a poet ; A new year’s resolution ; The road ; Much talk ; Running scared ; For Bernard Brown at seventy ; The art of it ; The night ahead ; A thirteenth poem ; Preparations for the voyage ; Wasted days From "How to survive the morning": Drought ; Greetings, all The paper cockerel ; Dream ; General improvements ; Home afterthoughts ; Rain ; How I got it all so very wrong ; The treaty ; Unblocking the treaty ; Paradise ; True story ; Fumbling for substance ; Only ask ; A change in the air ; Paradox ; Poem without words ; The place of rest ; How to survive the morning From "Table talk": A new book ; Writing about you ; The man who had great plans ; A Greek transaction ; A Parnell tale ; Newsflash ; A last visit to Happy Valley ; A letter to the editor ; The wish ; Rovrufe ; Local conditions ; Istanbul airport ; Table talk ; Paris evening ; Fine day for love ; Phrasal verbs & prepositional phrases ; Joyride to Albert Road ; What is this thing called love? The poem that wrote itself From "Dreamy days & nothing done": How it all began ; Gift ; Hats off ; When they shut down all tomorrows ; Join the club ; Lamp ; Marry me Pam? ; She slips into night ; Cleaning the pond ; Magic carpet ; What she really did, or didn’t ’ An accidental poem ; Dreamy days and nothing done ; Absolutely nothing ; Long time coming ; A house in Christchurch ; Writing in Northhampton ; Mucking things up ; Real weather ; Art needs time off ; Onward, citizens ; The Turkish notebook ; Wartime at the beach ; A moment of perfection ; Day pass ; This pen.