The Sea Walks into a Wall
A biting new collection by award-winning poet Anne Kennedy.
In The Sea Walks into a Wall, the natural world around us hits back.
The sea crashes its glass onto the bar.
You watch from afar.
You’d take it all back if you could. Everything.
You’d go down there and you’d.
And talks back too.
If I’m fucked,
you’re coming with me.
From rainy Ihumātao to London’s Kew Gardens, in the face of seas and streams, ducks and dogs, black drops and bureaucracies, humans bumble through.
Without distractions you’d rush through your life like chi through an empty room.
You bump into a baby and that takes up eighteen years.
Love fills the room like a maze.
Intelligent, playful, witty and innovative, these poems bite where it hurts.
Anne Kennedy is the author of three novels, a novella, four books of poetry, and many anthologised short stories. Her first book of poetry Sing-song was named Poetry Book of the Year at the 2004 Montana New Zealand Book Awards. The Darling North won the 2013 New Zealand Post Book Award for Poetry, and Moth Hour was a poetry finalist at the 2020 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards. Anne has also won the BNZ Katherine Mansfield Short Story Award and has held fellowships at the University of Auckland, the IIML, and at the University of at Hawai‘i. She has taught creative writing for a number of years in Hawai‘i and Auckland.
‘A new book by Anne Kennedy, one of our most exciting and innovative poets, is always a cause for celebration. These poems, like her mind, are a treasure trove – full of wit, intelligence, innovation, challenge, beauty and a whole lot of heart.’
‘Anne Kennedy celebrates and memorialises the world in a state of flux, at once dynamic, absurd and magical. Her poems are funny, sceptical and impassioned by turns, and always finely calibrated. Ultimately, she writes about the minor daily miracles of life itself, the narratives of the moment, the human surplus that eludes legal tidiness and finality of judgement.’
Shortlisted – Ockham New Zealand Book Awards 2022 – Mary and Peter Biggs Award for Poetry
'Tackling some challenging premises along the way, Kennedy is consistently insightful, witty, outright funny, and beautiful.' — Chris Reed for NZ Booklovers