Readers were invited to submit verse beginning or ending with the line I was angry with my friend, which opens William Blake’s poem A Poison Tree.
Tauranga’s Carol Garden writes: I was angry with my friend,/He should have known me better./I closed my Facebook account forthwith/And defriended him by letter. From John Jones of Waikouaiti: I was angry with my friend,/How could he be so crass?/Pinot noir with bouillabaisse/ Shows such a lack of class.
Dunedin’s Elizabeth Duke tells a calamitous tale: My trusty friend encouraged me/to share his finance company./”Ignore that ‘joint and several’ clause,/a relic of outmoded laws.”/I wonder where my friend could be;/the liquidator picked on me./My new career was at an end/I was angry with my friend.
From Kaye Bennetts of Whangaparaoa: I was angry with my friend,/And I hate her more each minute./ She bought a dress the same as mine/And looks much better in it. And Lois Priebee of Wainuiomata writes: I was angry with my friend/Began to doubt her loyalty/She flatters with a sidelong glance/Ingratiates with subtlety/But I believe I’ll win her back/ With patience and some bribery/When dinner time comes round again/She’ll wag her tail, and just for me.
But Helensville’s Anne Martin wins with: I was angry with my friend/And bluntly told her so./I pointed out her many faults/I felt she ought to know./But I wish now I’d been kinder,/I’m remorseful as can be./She’s won an island cruise for two,/And isn’t taking me.
Next contest, send a brief variation of the poem A Visit from St Nicholas, beginning ‘Twas a month after the election … Entries, for the prize below, close at noon on Thursday, October 26.
Submissions: email@example.com or Wordsworth, NZ Listener, Private Bag 92512, Wellesley St, Auckland 1141. Please include your address.