Kaiti, Gisborne 1980-1984

The Victorian age stood
Like a shining light over
Brown lawns, burnt by steady heat
Young parents set to build their
Own world of air and music
Their private empire fed on
Ideals of hope and vigour
Friends blew in like zephyrs and
Hung like hobos, strumming strings
Children pumped their tiny
Legs through flowing skirts
Outside on gentle slopes roamed
Conquistadors, ransacking
Chicks skipped from the same tight fists
That swung Goldfish out of ponds
Perfumed pohutukawas
Dusted the shade in crimson
Hoses arced, hanging rainbows
Over the garden of sweet
Green peas and strawberries
Red bricks rose without permit
Dad’s exercise in chaos
Theory, a rising chimney
That belched black smoke as it leant
A landmark achievement
Their Parthenon, their measure
Summer sat forever on
That hill, in the Eden their
Endeavour built

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