All day today the ice melted. 
My name is Queen. 
I haven’t melted at all 
though I am soft 
and getting softer 
until I will pardon you all. 
I watch benignly as one by one 
you slink off down diminishing avenues 
to somewhere less central. 
I pardon Jimmy who egged on Joe 
who threw the snowball at Jean 
and I pardon Jean for wiping off the snow 
as if snow were something that should go. 
Even the grass is pushing snow aside. 
I can feel it rising up inside me, too. 
I pardon it 
and get on with my reign. 



Anna Jackson lectures in English at Victoria University. She has published several books of poetry with Auckland University Press, most recently The Gas Leak (2006).  A fifth collection, Thicket, will be published in July 2011.