Red Riding Hood

She is always looking back to before me. 
Me, she sends outside, while she searches 
in cupboards and books. 
I’m sent into the woods. 
I’ll go back too. 
I’ll ask her mother what she was like as a child. 
How did you get through the woods 
so fast, Grandmother asks me instead. 
Not like your mother. 
Always so wild. 

Second Puppet

I will be the second puppet, 
smiling at the puppet laughing.
My eyes will be open 
but sly. 
I will be the puppet with eyebrows 
raised high. 
The reason my shirt is more crumpled 
is I am the one you touch. 
It is my choice to be second puppet 
and not to laugh so much. 

Castle Stitch

There is another stitch we use 
called run-around-the-castle. 
First we go to Brittany 
by car and car ferry. 
Then we run around the castle, 
passing ourselves like parcels. 
The castle is full of history. 
We skirt it 
like the thorns skirt Sleeping Beauty. 
It makes a pretty memory. 


Anna Jackson lives in Island Bay and lectures in the English programme at Victoria University. She has published four collections of poetry with Auckland University Press, most recently The Gas Leak (2006).