March 15th – Emily Blennerhassett

By August 9, 2019 August 15th, 2019 2019 runner up

March 15th

I am eating a peanut butter sandwich and
there are children with hand-painted placards arranged like
little gods, standing defiant atop the Godley Statue.
Their hands are brimming with hope,
I wait, hands outstretched and catch what
These small people feel so big.
I am offered a refrain: ‘This moment defines us’.
And yes, my blurry edges are starting to solidify,
and yes, this is a good definition of us,
scrawled in coloured pen and shouted with collective pride.
My feet are tired,
but one does not sit
at a protest.

I am sitting in the bus exchange and
there have been twenty
gunshots in Christchurch.
It is loud
but later it will be too quiet, and it will feel like oil across the back
of your throat.
It will feel like an earthquake,
and trust me, we would know.
I will count the sirens for weeks afterwards.
I will write a poem, but it will feel counterfeit
because this does not belong to me,
because my language is beginning to feel like a weapon and,
because I sat in the bus exchange,
while there were twenty gunshots in Christchurch
and the #17 bus took me home.



Portrait of Emily Blennerhassett
Emily Blennerhassett
Year 12
Cashmere High School

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