‘Althea Woodhouse is a very nice girl’
Aunt Olive said cheerfully —
My father dead,
My mother, Olive thought, not all that bright —
She felt she ought to do something about my life
Her own having been quite miserable,
As a kind of governess.
She had cause to be worried about her nephew
Who was starting to sound like a fascist
Althea and I are glaring at each other still
In the dining room
Of a Hawkes Bay hotel
After the ox-tail soup and over the lamb-chops
And each wanting to be
With someone we had yet to meet.