Sunday, September 16, 2012

Tuesday Poem - James Dean by James Norcliffe

James Dean

When the workmen had finally finished cutting the heavy black rubber tubing from the machine, they retired to a bench for a smoke.

One sat apart from the others with a faraway smile on his face. He was shirtless and his upper body was bronzed and shiny.

When he leaned into the circle of his hand, a match flickering there, I saw at once that this was James Dean.

He sat alone then, smiling, his cigarette like a tiny white exhaust pipe, dangling from his lower lip.

I wanted to speak to him, but I was too shy. He was already famous. I wanted to warn him of the flickering flame, the drifts of smoke.

But it was not possible I knew. I was too shy to attempt more than a small nod and a half smile, which he did acknowledge with a tip of his finger.

Besides, he would have thought I was referring to his Lucky Strike. Besides he was writing his own story, and it was his alone, not mine.

Here's another lovely poem I found in the latest edition of Poetry NZ. 


  1. I have always really enjoyed James Norcliffe's work. Thanks for posting!

  2. A good read this! Intriguing and a little sad.