Introduction and contents

Happy birthday Paula!


Oh the strange and wondrous beauty!

Oh the danger of obliteration!


Paula, you have done more than anyone we can think of to share the strange and wondrous beauty of New Zealand poetry and the wonderful possibilities it opens up for the losing – and finding – of the self.  There are so many poets in New Zealand who feel so much gratitude to you, for all you have done to support New Zealand poetry, and for the wonderful poetry you yourself have written.  And so we wanted to put together for you a shelf of poems, many written especially for your birthday, others chosen especially for you because of what they mean within a friendship.


*Note to the poets of New Zealand: in the quite probable event that you missed being contacted, we probably didn’t have your email address, or you slipped our minds for just a moment, but it’s not too late! Email us a poem for Paula, and perhaps a wee note, and we’ll add it to the site. (Email it to


Raewyn Alexander | laughter beneath a motorway bridge

Angela Andrews | Birthday

Sarah Jane Barnett | Memento

Jenny Bornholdt | Becoming Girl

Diana Bridge | From the Corridors of Old Account

Amy Brown | Snake

James Brown | Ghosting

Janet Charman | a PG tip

Murray Edmond | Reading at Alba

Fiona Farrell | Bunch

Janis Freegard | The Yellow Buddha

Rhian Gallagher | Moth

Bernadette Hall with Daniela Bagozzi | on entering the emporium/entrando nell’emporio

Siobhan Harvey | Upon Altruism

Dinah Hawken | Leaf

Anna Jackson | The cooking show

Anne Kennedy | Kia ora, Paula

Fiona Kidman | What I Do

Therese Lloyd | Many Things Happened

Vana Manasiadis | Returning to Green Country

Bill Manhire | Ballad of the Hurting Girl

Emma Neale | my mother in this way mixing me wings and tongue

Greg O’Brien | Orchard and Reserve

Maris O’Rourke | A Fizz in the Blood…

Chris Price | Richard Nunns takes tea with Miss Bethell

Helen Rickerby | At Virginia Lake, on my way back from Womad

Harry Ricketts | Love

Jack Ross | Bangalore 2002

Elizabeth Smither | Day Breaks in Dressing Gowns

C K Stead | Long Range Forecast

Robert Sullivan | Birthday Poem for Paula Green

Ruby and Pita Walker | Limerick/Black

Albert Wendt | New Coat

Sue Wootton | A treatise on the benefits of moonbathing





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