on the hill the powerlines
hook the sky down on me

i think, that blue isn’t human
or machine

can it feel the puncture
of us keeping the lights on?

can it see the interface
between me and the cows?

i think, my sister told me,
we’ve never really touched—

that our atoms keep an
opening between them

and it must be the heavens
or airspace in that orifice,

or the downtown of every
place we’ve never been in.

i think, when the doctor
lifted up my left tit

he broke the science
between us

really took the sky out
took the photographs

and even the molecules
ran home.

i think, my friend said
that there’s only her siblings

under this sun, that you
could image this hot ball

of life from space, and
she’s got four specks to call home to,
she meant that sometimes
we could all do

with an intervention.

i think, my aunty said
that we must speak

words of life
over our bodies

she meant, there’s been
ten dead loves in one

cycle of sun,
and that is a blue

that stays in
the soil,

in the bed,
in the kitchen.

aunty holds her

on the toilet
on a screen

i hold her

and in it all
a fat expanse

a celestial hand


Isla Huia (Te Āti Haunui a-Pāpārangi, Uenuku) is a te reo Māori teacher, writer, and musician. Her debut collection of poetry, Talia, was released in May 2023 with Dead Bird Books.