The New Zealand poet on my mind today is: Graham Lindsay.
There are so many poets in New Zealand - in fact I wonder if we have the most poets per capita in the world? I wouldn't be surprised at all if we did. The fact that we have an abundance of poets, makes it hard to choose who to write about.
I will alternate between female and male poets. Maybe I will limit the poets to lesser-known poets ... but then, maybe not. Let's see how it unfolds.
Graham Lindsay has published seven poetry books; all exceptional.
I enjoy his poetry for its unpretentious use of language and for the way he highlights life's ordinary (indeed, often overlooked) corners. Whether he's writing about the landscape, or elderly relatives or his baby son, he writes with a fondness for the people and the land, lacing it with subtle humour, and yet keeping the reality intact. It's never sugar-coated. He has a handle on the pathos of life, without losing his respect for it or for the people he writes about. His gritty taxi-driver poems in particular honestly reflect the reality of life.
I'm sure copyright will allow me to quote part of a poem of his:
I phoned my aunt to see
how she was getting on.
the meaning of snow.
Snow, I said, you know, snow, snow. Snow!
Remember the photo
of you and Uncle Syd
on The Peak in the big snow?
Down the line
came the airy, polished,
of the dayroom.
lines quoted from ... 'The Big Snow' by Graham Lindsay in his book 'Lazy Wind.'