PAULA GREEN lives in West Auckland with her partner, artist Michael
Hight, and their two children. She is the author of three poetry collections
published by Auckland University Press: Cookhouse (1997), Chrome
(2000), and Crosswind (2004). In 2004 she completed her doctoral
thesis in which she interleaved a poetic text with her academic text.
Paula is the current Literary Fellow at the University of Auckland.
In February 2005, she curated ‘Poetry on the Pavement’ as
part of the Auckland City Council’s ‘Living Room’
project. As a follow-up to the sequence in Crosswind that represents
a conversation between visual artists and her poetry, Paula has devised
a new collaboration with ten contemporary New Zealand artists. ‘The
North Western Line’ will be exhibited at the Corban Estate Art
Centre in September 2005 to coincide with the Going West Literary Festival.
Paula comments: ‘I once read a long list of associations that
Ernest Hemmingway made with rain that haunted me long after I had shut
the book. A big fan of rain myself, I am quite happy to venture outside
in the wet to walk in the bush, watch my girls ride horses, scramble
over rocks, and ramble along the wild beach that is our closest beach.
‘Placed on the first page, “Waitakere Rain” is a
gateway into Crosswind, for in writing these poems I settled
upon whatever had crossed my path and haunted me. I wrote this poem
because as much as I love writing poetry, I love reading the poems of
others. I love the way we can write our poetry on the sand (or the pavement,
or the blank page) and upon each return find that it feels a little
different. Above all, I love the notion that the world is plump with
unwritten rain poems.
‘I am also interested in the myriad crossings that make up our
lives; the unexpected connections between places, people, memory, art,
music. Sometimes, I test out my “crossings” in traditional
poetic forms. In this poem, I crossed between my attachment to rain
and that of somebody else, between my poetry and his prose in a sonnet
that has a hint of Petrarch, in rhyme more than meter.’
Poem: Waitakere Rain