freepost per copy – national & international

price NZ$28.00

Publication date: 01 Jul 2024


Dunstan Ward

ISBN: 978-0-473-71325-6

Softcover, 104 pp, 210 x 148mm


‘Will I ever go back?’

A last wave to my friends

in the crowd at the dwindling dock,

as the great Greek ship glides

down Waitematā Harbour,

then out to the opening sea,

till, far behind me, the land,

now only a long dark shadow,

finally fades from sight,

never, in years ahead, from my mind.

© Dunstan Ward 2024

‘The title is beautifully apt for the collection. The poems

take the reader deep into the heart of loss and love, into the

reality of mortality, into life’s mystery and its sorrow. The

collection as a whole is an unflinching examination of

distance and the effect of ‘distancing’ and ‘departures’ on

personal identity––a probing of how personal identity sits

within notions of national, cultural and family kinships

when departures disrupt a hitherto closed circle. It’s an

intimate collection and deeply human.’ ––Sue Wootton

‘A classic settler narrative.’

––Peter Simpson on the title sequence.

Born in Dunedin in 1942, Dunstan Ward studied at the University of Canterbury, then taught at Waikato University. In 1971 he left for London, and in 1973 settled

in Paris, retiring as Professor of English at the University

of London Institute in Paris in 2007; he still teaches a weekly seminar at the Paris centre of Columbia University (New York). With Beryl Graves, the poet’s widow, he edited the Complete Poems of Robert Graves. Departures is his third poetry collection.

Cold Hub Press ~ Dunstan Ward