Tūnui | Comet | by Robert Sullivan


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SKU: 9781869409692 Category: Tag:


A marvellous hīkoi through Aotearoa today alongside a leading Māori poet.

my old friend
I wonder how far north
you travel?
The road goes west
starting two doors up from The Dog’s Bollix
ending at sunset.
So many sunsets
Facebook and Instagram couldn’t contain them.

Tūnui | Comet is the first collection in more than a decade by one of our most important living Māori poets. Rolling easily between kōrero Māori and the canonical traditions of English-language poetry, through karakia and pōwhiri, treaty training and decolonisation wiki entries, Robert Sullivan takes readers on a marvellous poetic hīkoi.

Guided by Māui and Tāwhirimātea, Moana Jackson and Freddie Mercury, we walk from K’Rd council flats to Kaka Point, finding ourselves and our ancestors along the way.

We stand tall before we play the clock out
past the reef toward Matariki. Clouds raise
their fists as seagulls and sparrows swoon
into the rainbow. It has been a long homecoming
and he has made the pieces one.


Robert Sullivan is the author of a number of books of poetry including Star Waka (Auckland University Press, 1999), which has gone through multiple reprints, a graphic novel and a prize-winning book of Māori legends for children. He co-edited, with Albert Wendt and Reina Whaitiri, the anthologies of Polynesian poetry in English, Whetu Moana and Mauri Ola, and an anthology of Māori poetry with Whaitiri, Puna Wai Kōrero. He has taught at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa and Manukau Institute of Technology.

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