I ngā wā o mua . . .
there was a woman who lived in a house with a garden
just before the crossing to my school. There were
ornamental shutters on her windows. The stems
of her flowers danced on stilts with petals
layered over each other. No one had flowers
like this lady’s – dancers leaning over her fence
with tutus just the right size for us to ballerina
our fingers. She would come boiling out of her house
all red in the face. You – children. Leave my flowers alone.
Her blooms were all warm colours. Pink, orange,
yellow, peach, white hot.