Diminished judgment, rumpled, short concentration:
all I could find was my powers
ebbing when I woke up this morning.
Too much time in the dark room; the strain
almost too taut
to spin a memorandum of consent
into order, even with the miller’s daughter
looking on. I can scarce muster
the puff to adjourn the court
and I doubt I can tell right
with any certitude
from wrong let alone discern
probable truths. Try as I might,
it won’t make a blind bit
of difference. Let’s face it, the good stuff
Far too long I’ve hunched over
my papers; time to adopt
a new position. Recently, I’ve been gazing
at the dock.
John Adams is retiring as a judge today and has written this poem as a marker. John’s debut collection, Briefcase (AUP), won the NZSA Jessie Mackay Award for Best First Poetry Book at the 2012 NZ Post Book Awards. John Adams also has a Masters in Creative Writing from The University of Auckland and has been a consulting editor of legal texts – such as the Butterworths Family Law series.
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