Blatant Resistance

by Bub Bridger (Ngati Kahungunu)


I have a new scarlet coat and
I look like a fire engine
And I don't give a damn
One should grow old gracefully
Somebody said - I don't know who
But I've heard it all my life and
So you have to but to hell with that
I refuse to grow old anyway
But reluctantly and bold as brass
And when my arthritis bites in all
My bones and sleep sulks outside
My bedroom window in the dark
I just toss and turn and scratch
And swear the hours away I'm not
Growing older - it's the stupid
Betrayal of bones and flesh
That makes me feel this way but

Look at me now with springs in
My heels and the wind in my hair
Any moment I'll start whistling
And might even dance you a jig
And stop all the traffic along the
Quay wearing my new scarlet coat
And looking like a fire engine


"Up Here on the Hill", 1989, Mallinson & Rendel, Wellington.