Mark Pirie was born in Wellington in 1974. He is the Managing Editor for HeadworX,
a small press publisher of poetry/fiction. His poems have been published in India, New
Zealand, Australia, Croatia, the US and the UK. In 1998 University of Otago Press
published his anthology of "Generation X" writing, The NeXt Wave. He is an editor of
JAAM (New Zealand), the contributing New Zealand editor for papertiger, and serves on
the Editorial Advisory Board of Antipodes (USA) and the committee of the Wellington
International Poetry Festival (NZ). Salt Publishing, Cambridge, England, has recently
published his new and selected poems, Gallery: A Selection. In 2004, Mark co-edited
with Michael O'Leary the anthology Greatest Hits, an anthology of some of the best and
most innovative NZ poetry and prose of the last 20 years, released four limited edition
chapbooks through the Earl of Seacliff Art Workshop: Bullet Poems, Poems for Poets, The
Angel Bus
(song lyrics) and Two Poems - an impression of the sea (an experimental work
for the Australian poet Ken Bolton). Future projects will include the editing of New
Zealand's first Science Fiction Poetry anthology with Tim Jones.


You arrive by night
holding her hand

and it seems it's not quite
what you expected, so she

opens the travel guide
but flips to the end instead.

Now, you're thinking
of that canal you came

to see or another
"historic site", and as

she turns to speak
you notice her face,

the way it changes with
the colour of the light.


1. Tilt

you tilt upwards
& begin

to notice her eyes
the way

they alter
as the first kiss stirs

2. Roll

you roll back
& see

the light
across her hips

your face
covering her shadow

3. Crane

you slip
down a bank

& fall
towards the river

your limbs
shaving the trees

4. Zoom

you kick the door
open & tumble

from a moving car -
the camera

catching your legs
in mid-air

Capitalist Object Lessons

1. Art

He is lying
on top of her
in an unexpected
way. This is to
be expected.
What's more the book
will sell.

2. Winning Is All

Follow the ball,
that way. Yes, that's right.
See. Now you've got it.
That's good.
You're in control.


1. The Leaving

After you've left
I wait outside

until the jingle of bottles
fades in the distance.

At this hour
nothing stirs

except the peaceful mutiny
in the rose garden.

I sit down and watch as the petals
bail out and fetter the bricks.

2. Letting Go

I should've said,
"I'll call you next week for dinner."

But that would be lying.

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