The place of hates

I dined on uncountable spites, from subatomic spites to those of bold conceptual design. I dabbled in murderous and premature confidences. I fed the boiler of bitterness, and whistled a heinous cry as I passed through any tunnel that had no other side. I flew on wings of ill animus and feathered my bed with an abomination of duck down and disdain. Eventually, I poisoned myself and tied my torso to a gentle tree until leaves withered and sizzled and ricocheted and cramped like an exploding arboretum of dehydrated guts. I danced to the sound of eternal rest, even doing a jig on my own final twitch. I committed acts of excretion. At the end beyond the end I was nominated for a prize and I spat on it.

Image of Rachel O'NeillRachel O’Neill is a writer, filmmaker and artist based in Te Whanganui-a-Tara, Aotearoa. Their debut book One Human in Height (Hue & Cry Press) was published in 2013. They were awarded a 2018 SEED Grant (NZWG/NZFC) to develop a feature film and held a 2019 Emerging Writers Residency at the Michael King Writers Centre. Earlier poems by O'Neill appear in Best New Zealand Poems 2011 and 2013.

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Rachel stans Food Court and Salty for their brilliant zines and events showcasing Aotearoa writing.

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‘The children have grown’, Best New Zealand Poems 2013

Early growth’, Best New Zealand Poems 2011

Photographer credit: author selfie with Jasper Johns High School Days 1969.