Issues by Mary Kippenberger

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A New Year of Being Old

01 February 2020

A new decade.  Seemingly minutes ago I stood in the still half-light that heralds dawn, watching from Napier’s Marine Parade as the new century slipped into view. Strangers, lining the shore, looking neither left nor right, silhouetted their presence as…

Mary Kippenberger01 February 2020

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Winter Inspiration

01 August 2019

June, 2019. It’s Sunday morning, another Hawke’s Bay blue-skied, windless, winter’s morning.  June and I have rescued the last of the tomatoes and stumbled with joy upon the odd hidden kūmara.  I hear the sounds of Haden, Hamish and James…

Mary Kippenberger01 August 2019

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It’s Only Love

01 June 2019

I am sitting at the table of our Rotorua AirBnB. We have eight days of storytelling in front of us and two weeks behind us the Christchurch massacre.  In The Warehouse today I hugged two strangers – the checkout woman…

Mary Kippenberger01 June 2019

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Sexy Onions

01 April 2019

It’s 11 pm and The Frank Burkitt Band have sung their last encore to rapturous acclaim. Cars can be heard bump, bump over the culvert, homeward bound. The band, fed and watered, are ready to jam into the night, reluctant…

Mary Kippenberger01 April 2019

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Dancing Lessons

01 February 2019

 It’s 9.30 am and sweltering.  I’m just back from the garden where I’ve been chatting to plants and ponies alike. No one can hear me, it’s probably best that way. Later the mokopuna will join me for pea picking, potato…

Mary Kippenberger01 February 2019

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A flattened hand, crotch lift

01 December 2018

We might have been both flooded in and out, the river may have risen higher than we have ever seen it in 30 years, causing more destruction than ever before.  We might have dug, planted, extended, mowed, weeded and encouraged…

Mary Kippenberger01 December 2018

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Time to Potter

01 October 2018

Five years ago, de Lautours from around the globe gathered to be renewed. To meet, eat and share stories. To gaze at our whakapapa plastered along echoing corridors, men in great wigs and frenchified garb gazing back with distain, assured…

Mary Kippenberger01 October 2018

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Passing the Reins

01 August 2018

It’s 5.30am and the house is quiet. I’d like to say there wasn’t a sound, not even a mouse, but I can’t.  Just as I put pen to paper I heard the ominous snap of the mouse trap, followed by…

Mary Kippenberger01 August 2018

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In Support of Frontliners

01 June 2018

I did not procure a bus by unfair means or advantage; there is no need for head shaking or mutters of ‘POOR Peter’.  Oh yes, maybe I did say with pitiful tone that I’m nearly 67 and who knows how…

Mary Kippenberger01 June 2018

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Self-Checkout & Adoring Fans

01 May 2018

I’d rather be cold than too hot. I found the summer heat wave debilitating and gave Peter some ‘You sound like your mother’ moments. It’s a very effective sentence. I was at Pak’nSave and the checkouts were snaking. I decided…

Mary Kippenberger01 May 2018

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Yay, MooMoo!

14 February 2018

My heart is buried in these Central Hawke’s Bay hills. Like a Rita Angus painting, dusk shadow settles in the cracks where the rolling crevice meets. If you catch it right, as you turn into the Te Hauke straight, an…

Mary Kippenberger14 February 2018

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Egg White Fantasy

24 December 2017

Butterflies of the stomach variety are, for me at this grand age, often missing in fl ight. I don’t count the days to my birthday, but I do love vicariously watching other butterfl ies dance as the grandies mark the…

Mary Kippenberger24 December 2017

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Letter from the Country July August

02 August 2017

Some days it’s just better not to leave home. Needing some electronic gadget I walked into Jaycar, Hastings. Lots of vibrant people without wrinkles stood behind the counter. I noted one with an enormous button-like thing moulded into his earlobe.…

Mary Kippenberger02 August 2017

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Letter from the Country May June 2017

03 June 2017

It’s time for me to harden up. It’s time for me to at least consider the concept of harden up. Born a reluctant city girl, green paddocks and open spaces have only been my day-to-day life for 30 years and…

Mary Kippenberger03 June 2017

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Letter from the Country March April

03 April 2017

They were coming. From far and wide they were coming. In planes, on buses, in buses, cars, campervans, caravans, motorhomes, motorbikes, they were on their way … on their way to Te Rangi. The whanau, the wwoofers, even the grandies…

Mary Kippenberger03 April 2017

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Letter from the Country

04 February 2017

Food … I can’t promise you mouthwatering recipes. I can’t promise glossy photographic evidence of my culinary prowess. That my son Matthew is a stunning chef will ever be a mystery to me. 52 years ago I learned to stuff…

Mary Kippenberger04 February 2017

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Letter from the Country November December 2016

24 December 2016

it’s early Saturday morning. Tents and buses lie quiet, their inner charges open mouthed in gentle slumber. Morning will be a rude awakening. Nothing much to see but a solitary grandmother in tee-shirt nighty, long sturdy gumboots, suction cupping her…

Mary Kippenberger24 December 2016

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Letter from the Country

02 October 2016

When we arrived back from Canada it was 1964. I was 13 years old. New Zealand was far different from the society I had spent the last ten years in. There was a pre-American innocence here. I remember the shock…

Mary Kippenberger02 October 2016

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05 August 2016

For 53 years I have never been without a horse, but today I have no horses outside my bedroom window. Today I won’t put covers on or take covers off. I won’t pick up poo. I won’t change their paddocks,…

Mary Kippenberger05 August 2016