I Saw Three Ships

I dreamed we waited in a stadium;

thousands of happy children filled the place

to overflowing. I turned to smile

at you, but instead of seeing your face


I saw a luminous uncanny void

shaped like an egg. I woke up terrified.

Then the scene shifted and we found ourselves

by a massive concrete block outside


on which a grubby sheet concealed a child

that may have been dead. Sick with despair

I watched you send it rolling with your hand

and leave it crumpled on the bottom stair.


Then came the final scene. Sitting alone

in the darkening stadium, we knew at last

the meaning of our loss when three great ships,

with not a soul on board, swept blindly past.


By Alistair Te Ariki Campbell