The undulating track
“I’m not here,” the singer moaned weakly through the car's drone;
to his voice, we flew through the night to the Taupo lakeside;
where Youth Everlasting, with a subtle smile, spoke slightly;
laconically receiving us for the night.
I watered pine trees in the morn;
with water of steeped tea tree leaves, brewed before;
down a diversion, a turn, and another, till we reached the rocky roads;
populated by swine and equines, that’d lead us to the Waikaremoana lakeshore.
Panekiri bluffs rose tall, and with it we rose too;
we crawled our way along the path, past fungi and pot-heads;
we leapt from cliff tops, but the darkness smothered our eyes;
ascending the stairs, in the gloom, we pondered cackling dusk birds.
The next dawn a storm-head wound around an early squall, holding us;
‘Shall we go?’; ‘How could we go?’; if we’d left, well, who could know?
It blew a backpack across the decking; but it hurled us on our way;
we rounded the bends and found the shore to the calm.
The blighters bit and the hazelnuts twisted;
ligaments strained; the falls eventually came; and so did we;
She was wrong, y’know; that DOC girl, that is: Who could go so fast?
How could we be so wrong, to think we were fast, to take it so leisurely?
Our pursuer, the night, caught us by the legs again;
possums prowled at every corner, their blood eyes beaming red;
we suppered at a lean-to: if only it could have been the Party House;
arriving at the hut, cleaned, we slept to the clatter of nails and tails.
Dawn breaking, the veil over the hut lifted too: a roof of green and red!
The insects muttered overhead while we curled around the inlet;
for the first time, the sun emerged full to sweeten the shore;
but our pace was not reaching the time set.
Text bell, flat; one bar, flat; one bar, two bars, flat;
the boatsman’s call rang out in the distance;
fishermen cried out in vain in our service;
we could only rest and make new plans;
At a picnic table we assembled again;
and spoke of deception, miscommunication and more;
on the shore, I could once again talk with the outside world;
our trip out was imminent; the blighters bit; and, back, the car roared.
“I’m not here,” the singer moaned again through the drone of the car;
we were; talked of talk; but there’s no such thing as a free meal.
That fella naturally objected to the ideal; she talked it to death;
the night was finally a comfort as we came to the final reel.