Linda Connell


LINDA CONNELL has recently returned to Christchurch after nearly seven years living in South Florida. Her first book of poems, Laughing with the Undertaker, was published in 2004 by Steele Roberts of Wellington. Poems have been published in Sport, the NZ Listener, OUSA Literary Review, Poetry NZ and Takahe, and will shortly be included in the biannual chapbook anthology Poetry Aotearoa.

Connell has this to say about her poem: ‘ “Cycling in America” was written during a period of intense frustration, as a response to the pressures and absurdities of trying to live the American Dream. I seemed to keep veering between mirth, scorn and rage and felt utterly out of place in the materialistic lifestyle of South Florida. Not that I didn’t enjoy the climate, become fascinated by the general craziness of the place and appreciate the cheap cost of everything, which meant I often found myself trawling the shops like everyone else, well and truly seduced. This of course added another layer of confusion to my warped attitude. I began scribbling down snatches of dialogue, thoughts and observations, and found myself cycling back through childhood memories of impotence and bewilderment, and eventually the poem emerged. I decided to construct it to read as stream of consciousness, gathering momentum and anxiety as it gathered ideas and wound its way to its final unresolved questions.’


Poem: Cycling in America



Steele Roberts Publications Ltd

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