Meeting with Te Rauparaha

by Michael O'Leary

The early evening finds me
Emerging from the water
At Paekakariki Beach
After swimming long and deep

The late summer colours
Cover the sky and the hills
I am alternately looking from
Land to the seaward visage

Towards and beyond Kapiti
My eyes straight to the horizon:
He stands suddenly beside me
He has heard I am with

A Raukawa girl, and he gives me
A distant, yet easy blessing
The beach towel over my shoulder
Becomes his korowai as a koha

So, the great man who haunts
This coast has visited me
In friendship and aroha, and
When I look away, he is gone

Michael O'Leary

Michael Oleary's picture

I am a poet, novelist, artist, and academic from Aotearoa New Zealand. I have had several books of poetry published including 'Toku Tinihanga: selected poems 1982 to 2002' - my latest collections were 'Paneta Street' 2008 and 'Livin' ina Aucklan' in 2010. At present I am working on a project called 'Fences Fall' which is a collaboration with myself and several musicians to produce a CD of songs based on my poems.

Last updated August 09, 2011