Sunday, August 12, 2018

Fishing The Waitara

You could tell the mood of the river
offally bad
pungent and blood shoot red
swapping yarns as we jagged with home made treble hooks

The flash of an elusive kahawai evading the lure
hand over hand
jerking taut for the hook-up
sometimes successful

Not like the boys from Manukorihi Pah
whose sugar bags bulged and wriggled
while I, a novice
vainly jiggled

In the season the whitebait ran
along the banks where white boards submerged
revealed their illuminated bodies
not enough in the can for a feed

Not like the Mokau
where kerosene tins of the bait
captured by the shoal
reward for those who chose to wait
in the early grey light of a Taranaki morning

It was the Waitara where a  flounder
captured the imagination of bigger things,
a bonding place, of solace and muddy meditation

Roger Smith
August, 2018

Whitebaiters #1 - Artist: Roger Smith