Scenes from the Motor-camp

When I woke up,
you’d gone to the movies
and left me a strange looking biscuit
packaged in cellophane
beside the bed.
We lived in a bus
that went nowhere,
plugged into a motor-camp
on the outskirts of town.
I didn’t know what I was hungry for
and the biscuit tasted like sawdust.
my man likes to shave me,
he likes his woman clean
clean like a kiddie
no hair, no mess.
you read books?
I watch the tele,
I’ve seen Barney
the purple fuckin dinosaur!
ABC, come play with me,
yeah fuckin Barney’s all right!
you put mimi on your face,
straight mimi
that’ll clear that shit right up,
ask my man, my man knows everything.
turn up the music sweetheart
I can hear the neighbours
Daisy loves ponies
Daisy loves the sea
Daisy is the reason
you won’t come back to me
You try living in a bus
that a dirty brown river rat
has decided to call home.
I heard him, I heard the
little fucker eating the plastic lid
off the peanut butter jar.
Don’t believe that cartoon stuff
about mice and rats and cheese;
it’s peanut butter man,
peanut butter every time.
One of the happiest moments of my life
was seeing that rat trapped,
his head twisted almost off
his body snapped down the centre,
get thrown into the mighty Matai
to float and sink and dissolve.
The day was heavy with cloud
threatening another downpour.
From our makeshift bed
I watched the neighbours shake out their carpet squares
and poke wet leaves from their canopies.
I must have fallen asleep again
by the time you finally came home;
the half eaten biscuit
abandoned on the floor,
the pamphlet from the hospital
face down on the pillow.

Listen to Therese lloyd read from ‘Scenes from the Motor-camp’


Therese Lloyd completed the MA in Creative Writing at Victoria in 2006. She has been involved in a heap of poetry readings and performance over the years, and she currently lives in Wellington.