Secrets shared in open-hearted poetic memoir

BORN TO A RED-HEADED WOMAN<br><b>Kay McKenzie Cooke</b><br><i>Otago University Press</i>
BORN TO A RED-HEADED WOMAN<br><b>Kay McKenzie Cooke</b><br><i>Otago University Press</i>
This is Cooke's third collection of poems.

The trees on the cover are still on an angle, as in made for weather (OUP, 2007).

Cooke loves writing about her life in Southland and Otago.

Born to a Red-Headed Woman is a poetic memoir that uses songs to bring a sense of memory and transport us back to places and people.

Cooke produces a heap of raw poems that look at a life which bears witness to her own experience as honestly as possible.

Readers are being confided in. Secrets are shared.

Cooke hits lots of nerves. ''Making waves across my time'':

Invercargill welcomed me
with wide-open streets,
skies with nothing to hide,
flat roads to take me straight
out to sea. Invercargill flung around me
arms of rain,
allowed me to savour its breadth.
And sun. Like in Anderson's Park
on that Sunday when we first met, you so tall
and me so short it made us laugh. In church that night
you joked
how you had to hold the hymn book
we were sharing
down at your knees.

Cooke's poems are open-hearted, real and intimate.

- Hamesh Wyatt lives in Bluff. He reads and writes poetry.

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