About the Poem
About the poet
Sam Hunt is a rare commodity in New Zealand: a ham actor playing to the gallery and willing to...
What a pity
What a pity
I’m not sure that it’s pity I
feel for you, not rightly sure.
Remember last week when I called on by -
wished straight up I’d never made your door.
I think it’s more loathing I feel:
that I visit in the hope of
finding you dead - I think that’s for real -
to verify a total death of love.
But we are of course so civilised.
You pour me a drink I wish were
ten times as strong. I let my eyes slide
slyly round your room. You almost purr.
As for your cat - a she, now ‘it’ -
it spits at me. At least someone is
honest! She (it) is no longer just a bit
for any old tom. (All that nasty business.)
As you, too, claim you’re not. You’re not
taking shit from no one, most of all
me: you’re not just a hot twot to trot,
a good-time girl giving the blokes a ball.
I nod and sip my drink. (Is this
tomcat’s piss she’s poured me?)
I could as well be researching a thesis on love,
and love’s death; and of the pity.
'What a Pity' from Doubtless: New and Selected Poems (Craig Potton Publishing, 2008), © Sam Hunt 2008, used by permission of the author. Recording from the Aotearoa New Zealand Poetry Sound Archives (2004).
Sponsor this poem
Would you like to sponsor this poem? Find out how here.