The morning sun, low behind the cumulus,

catches the edge of the clouds and trims them gold.

Being older is not what I thought it would be.

I knew I would be bald.  Slower.  But not that I would be sad.

At 6am, in bed, the day still a list of chores to be done,

my daughter snores in the wedge between my arm and my side,

and I do not move but wait for the alarm to ring again,

watching the blocks of shadow and light slowly form the room.

Last night I tried to give advice

but could only conclude that men are disappointing.

At best.  And often worse: disgusting.  Pointless.

Failed, egotistical, entitled pricks.

The magnolia tree’s first buds are unfurling a fan

of fragile pink against the bare branches.  Nature’s stupid

repetitive optimism.  Nature’s chores to be done;

life to erupt, and burst and fruit,

and to fade, and to fall and to rot.

There is no good, no bad, no God.

Just the light brightening the wall and the warmth

we share in this bed before I am gone to shave, shower and shit.

Before I am gone.

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I wrote a book called Kaitiaki o te Pō