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225
LONE KAURI
Whatever happened, it happened.
In swamp, on lowlands, gum diggers find ancestors.
Sometimes a lot of them lying the one way
as though sometime was
a great wind which put down a bush if not a forest,
trunk by trunk, and they've been lying there unseen.
Their wood can still be good enough for working.
Hauled at, they are reluctant to be earth, turned over.
They are pigheaded.
On the climb to Ngapukehaua there's one
didn't go down, up there by himself standing
over teatree. He's not far from caves of the dead.
Maybe he feels responsible,
he's older. Nowadays
I have to stop for a breather.
He has been lightning smitten and gale struck.
He is failing from the top down.
I like to crouch into and lean my back against.
I say "Brother" and he sighs.
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