Tuesday Poem: ‘Landslide’ by Emma Barnes


I am her reflection, she is my reflection.
I was a tiny girl, held between two fingers.

I rolled out sheet music for automatic pianos,
through the holes pricked grass, through my

fingers the ridges slid. The air pushed me down,
the ground came up, she, she, she, was a whis-

perer. Later, a larger girl, I swallowed the
paper, piece, by body, by piece and she lifted

me with her hands, her rough hands, and she sang
out loud. I realised in this instant that I had al-

ways been here with her. Right from the start
when I popped out of the oven, just like this


‘Landslide’ was first published in Turbine, A New Zealand Journal of New Writing.  A German translation of this poem can be found at the Aotearoa Affair Blog Fest.

Emma Barnes is a poet from Christchurch and currently lives and writes in Aro Valley, Wellington. She’s released three editions of her magazine Enamel and is trying to understand what a book of poetry is so maybe she can write one. She has had poetry published in quite a few places including JAAM, Landfall, Catalyst, and Best New Zealand Poems: “Passive Aggressive Letter to a John” in 2008 and “Milk For Money” in 2010.

Tuesday Poem For more Tuesday Poems, go here.

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