Kuia bends in slack lagoon to show her moko
How to plunge elbow-deep for pipi.
Two black shags on bleached driftwood watch.
Godwits group to sew river’s hem of shot silk.
Two pied stilts shriek and dart, glare and stare. There!
Oystercatchers chug to and fro in pairs.
By myself. The rub of grit, squelch of grey silt,
Gleam and glug of sluggish river-bend water.
Deeper? I dare not cross.
Toes stuck in mud, ankles awash, I slouch,
Inelegant, inappropriate, immobile
As a beached, discarded couch.
A heron flies low and lazy, downbeat wings
Hanging like two beach towels –
Two wet beach towels, our bach verandah. Back then.
I bend and arm-plunge, collect chattering shells.
In my bag they will be convivial friends
And at the dinner table my quiet companions.