Swimming

Swimming

Nothing reduces you to your skin like the sea - cold
plunge into reality, a tongue already salty & all that power
self-propelling you through our other element -

body loving every pummelling second as your mind slips
on the (no wonder) Madonna-blue beach wrap of the sky.
The straightest line imaginable just over the breakers,

visibly separating the two, doesn't exist.
You do. Yet, can you hold a handful of salt water
to prove it for just one moment before you go.


from Dante's Heaven (Puriri Press, 2006), copyright © Jan Kemp 2006, used by permission of the author

Recordings

Jan Kemp Reading from her Poems

1Puriri

2Hexandra in recess

3Master of Ceremonies

4Poem for R A K Mason (1905 - 1971)

5Night Poem

6Old Railway Guard

7Turkey Talk

8In golden smock, walking

9Down the first road

10West Coast town

11Pohutukawa

12Walking a beach

13Atalanta

14Melanion on the waterfront

15Chagall windows, Fraumunster, Zurich

16To my father, M.H.K.

17Hong Kong sounds

18The other hemisphere

19The dance of hemispheres

20Father's metamorphosis

21Sky crosses, Singapore

22At Kikowhakerere Bay

23The terrible angel

24Truth

25Song of Noah's wife

26The Ballad of Donna Quixote

27Ship

28Wedding / Naming / Bells

29Snow or Alles ist klar

30Centuries

31Crux Australis - Te Paki o Autahi - Southern Cross

32Dante's 'heaven'

33'We are all newcomers'

34Our Paradise

35'Naked ladies' near Otama Beach, Coromandel Peninsula

36A pukeko's trip south

37Swimming

38Bowl spoon table

39Best friends

40A childhood secret

41Glance

42On news of a poet's death: I II IV

43Someone kissed me

44E la selva oscura, non c'e?

45He reads his poem aloud

46Being Beatrice

47Beatus

48crossing fields

49Swiss apple

50Cornish hymn

51on Shepherd's Hill

52blasted harvest

53Millet's L'Angelus

54Red Lamp

55Sue sewing

56Chronoclocking