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Another Weekend at the BeachAllen Curnow
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Vol. 15 No. 8 · 22 April 1993
Poem

Another Weekend at the Beach

Allen Curnow

190 words

Turn left at the sign. Lone Kauri Road
winds down to the coast. That’s a drop
of about five hundred feet. Look out
for the waterfall, the wooden bridge,
the mown grass, the pohutukawa glade.

The western horizon will have slid
behind the mask of an eye-levelled
next eyeballing wave. Park here. Proceed
on foot. The spot has barbecues with
MALE and FEMALE dunnies in a figtree

thicket, wrong hemisphere, implausibly
fruiting. Tracks cross the wind-sifting dune
skyline of unkempt lupin, marram,
spinifex’s incontinent seed-
vessels bowling downwind, the way I’ve

come and come, how many thousand times
to no other conclusion, the back
of a broken wave, and found no word
or forgot or omitted to write
it down, Ah, quelle écriture de la

différance! l’orthographe derridienne
for every thing’s everything. Then why
not phytoplankton, the algoid bloom
any less than those offshore purples, this
beached medusa, polythene waste, bubbled

sea-froth, tincture of a present spume
spattered up the sands? Mind where you pick
your mussels and kina, these tides may
secrete indigenous toxins. Deadly
to the text. Shall I copy it again?

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