Whim Wham was the pen-name of the major New Zealand poet Allen Curnow.
His highly entertaining verses, commencing in the Christchurch Press in 1937 and in the New Zealand Herald from 1951, voiced the awkward questions so many New Zealanders wanted to ask.
Whim Wham became a Saturday institution and required reading for generations of New Zealanders. His astute observations and wry take on New Zealand events offer invaluable insights for readers today. He captured New Zealanders' reactions to world affairs from Franco and Hitler to Vietnam and South Africa, as well as covering the local political scene from Walter Nash to the eras of Robert Muldoon and David Lange. With humorous renderings of our rugby obsession and ruminations on the state of the nation's teeth, Professor Terry Sturm's selection of the best 200 verses offers a wonderfully unique record of over fifty years of this country's recent past.
First published 2005.
Allen Curnow needs no introduction as one of NZ's foremost poets. Terry Sturm has been Professor of English at Auckland University for many years. He has edited THE OXFORD HISTORY OF NZ LITERATURE and written widely on NZ writers. His most recent book was a Montana 2004 finalist, on the popular NZ fiction writer Edith Lyttleton. He is currently writing a critical biography of Allen Curnow.