Poetry Shelf Monday poem: Gregory O’Brien’s ‘Streets and mountains’

Streets and mountains

As the cloud reads the orchard, a swimmer reads the curve

of the bay, an ice-skater reads the surface of the half-frozen lake

and, in season, a fisherman reads the pattern of sea-birds. As a

chair reads its position at table, an aeroplane reads the evening

sky and finds a way through. The weather reads the furrowed

brow of the forecaster and is itself, in turn, read. As ever, a bird

reads the absence of birds above a certain field, just as the

streets read the mountains, the mountains the streets, and have

as much to say, as much to say.

Gregory O’Brien

An exhibition of Gregory O’Brien’s paintings–‘The Wading Birds of Drybread’–opened at the Millenium Gallery, Blenheim, on November 1. Recent projects include a new suite of seven collaborative etchings made with John Pule–see below.

Roadsigns for a highway without end, Liku, Niue, 2020, etching and aquatint

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