New verse by New Zealand-born writer living in England, Fleur Adcock.
These days when anxious friends confide in me
about their intimate medical problems
it’s never that they’re afraid they’re pregnant
and the situation is complicated
by not being sure whether the father
was that guy from Christchurch at my party
or, two days afterwards, up at Nick’s place,
when we all stayed the night sleeping on floors,
our brilliant but unstable student friend –
far too young; and the one from Christchurch, well . . .
plus they’ve proved that the old wives’ remedy –
casseroling yourself in a boiling bath
while drinking gin – serves only to make you drunk,
and not happy-drunk; sickening, really.
From Fleur Adcock’s new collection of verse Hoard (Victoria University Press, $25), available at Unity Books.