MARY CRESSWELL is from Los Angeles. She came to Wellington in 1970.
She is co-author (with Mary-Jane Duffy, Mary Macpherson, and Kerry Hines)
of Millionaire’s Shortbread, illustrated by Brendan O’Brien
and published by University of Otago Press in 2003. She has published
poems in New Zealand, in Australia, Canada, the UK and the United States,
and in online journals. She has always worked as a science editor. She
also lives next to the sea: this particular closeness and the goofy
vocabulary of research science both have had a major influence on her
imagination and will doubtless continue to do so.
Cresswell comments: ‘The poem “Golden Weather (Cook Strait)”
was first published by Richard Reeve and Nick Ascroft in Glottis
magazine. It’s my downstream response to the cryptic priorities
of 1970 New Zealand: worship of the outdoors, how to preserve aged relatives/family
values, the mysterious hierarchy of ritual foods, the sacred dog …
to the language: “packing a sad” “on the day”?
… and above all, to the red-blooded Kiwi family, that noble and
indissoluble unit, Doing the Right Thing On the Day even if it bloody
well kills us – or leaves us up Cook Strait without a paddle.’
Poem: Golden Weather (Cook Strait)