New Zealand Listener Issue 16 2021

New Zealand Listener is the country’s most respected general interest magazine, bringing you a wide variety of news, stories, columns, reviews, plus TV listings, every week.

New Zealand
Are Media Pty Limited
52 Issues

in this issue

3 min
on life support

A year ago, this country was braced for the risk its hospitals could be overwhelmed by the pandemic. Now they are overwhelmed – but simply by business as usual. Covid-19 is well under control, but the emergency departments of three of our big hospitals, Middlemore, Dunedin and Whangārei, have this year reached critical capacity and have had to plead for patients to stay away or go to local GP clinics. Elsewhere, hospitals are warning of serious problems even before the onset of winter, with North Shore and Waitākere hospitals among those postponing elective surgery. Everywhere, the shortage of doctors, nurses, GPs, specialists, mental-health services and technical staff worsens. And behind the overrun hospitals is a primary-care sector under extreme pressure, with too many patients unable to access GPs in time to…

1 min
poetry &

I know some can’t stand the ampersand yet when I see its curled strand I think of cellos, a cellist & the small upflick flourish of a finale bow stroke & the way the coiled thread mirrors a G-clef’s slopes so now & then I try its loose slipknot which seems to lend a relaxed, ready tone to the page: a little like the note you’d hear play when a young cellist’s mother bends above a borrowed pair of shiny, lace-up recital shoes while she hums first we do this loop & then we do this one too The poet and fiction writer’s new collection of short stories, THE PINK JUMPSUIT, will be published later this year by Quentin Wilson Publishing.…

10 min
a tribute to women’s spirit

Reading the article on Charlotte Grimshaw’s memoir (“The unauthorised version”, April 3) brings to mind other talented female writers whose boundaries were infiltrated by fathers, and some of them by male lovers and hospital psychiatrists at various points in their lives. To name a few: Katherine Mansfield, Sylvia Plath, Janet Frame and Robin Hyde. That these women, whose lives involved mental illness, abuse, self-harm and sometimes suicide, managed to leave behind major literary scholarship is a tribute to women’s spirit. Grimshaw is to be commended for carrying this forward. Glennys Adams (Waiheke Island) Taking on CK Stead. How challenging is that. Charlotte, I applaud thee. Stephen Phillips (Lower Hutt) The main impression I got from the article was that Grimshaw doesn’t understand it was a different world when she was a child, and how ordinary her…

1 min
winning caption

FINALISTS Vladimir Putin: “Never mind, little man behind me with Kalashnikov. Just take photo!”– John Carstensen, TaurangaMan peeping through car door: “Once a cagey b……, always a cagey b……”.– Alan Belcher, ChristchurchPutin to passenger: “I always over-steppe the park.”– Alan Belcher, ChristchurchPutin (sings): “Czar Czar Czarsputin.”– Alan Bernacchi, Orewa“Objects in the rear-view mirror may appear smarter than they are…”– Conal Atkins, NelsonPutin: “I said ‘The Riviera’, not Siberia!”– Ann Love, NelsonCaption: President Putin “proves” he’s 6ft tall.– Kate Highfield, HastingsPutin: “Hell has frozen over, Donald– pay up!”– Ann Neale, NelsonCaption: A wolf in sheep’s clothing.– Ellie Henderson, Motueka“But I’ve followed Donald’s directions to Mar-a-Lago.”– Steve Cox, Christchurch…

1 min
quips & quotes

“My favourite part about being an American in New Zealand is seeing what constitutes a political scandal or crisis here. They’re like ‘Not every bus has solar panels yet! #ResignJacinda!’ You can really judge the quality of life in a place by the things they get upset about.” – Author Mark Manson on Twitter“Only the British could colonise the world and then leave the EU because they don’t want to be around foreigners.” – Twitter“The more you know, the less you need.” – Australian Aboriginal adage“I always cheer up immensely if an attack is particularly wounding because I think, well, if they attack one personally, it means they have not a single political argument left.” – Margaret Thatcher quoted in the Times“When are we going to stop making excuses for…

1 min
10 quick questions

1. True or false? Linseed oil is used to make linoleum flooring. ❑ True ❑ False 2. Which classic film includes the quote “I want to be alone”? ❑ The Wizard of Oz ❑ Breakfast at Tiffany’s ❑ Grand Hotel ❑ It’s a Wonderful Life 3. True or false? It’s possible to legally own a giant panda to keep as a pet. ❑ True ❑ False 4. Which of these animals is not native to India? ❑ Baboon ❑ Rhinoceros ❑ Lion ❑ Leopard 5. The picturesque Victoria Falls in southern Africa is a feature of which river? ❑ Orinoco ❑ Zambezi ❑ Nile ❑ Congo 6. Where on the body would you wear an item called an ushanka? ❑ On the head ❑ Over the groin ❑ Around a wrist ❑ On the feet 7. Where is New Zealand’s second-tallest structure after Auckland’s Sky Tower? ❑ Nelson ❑ New Plymouth ❑ Queenstown ❑ Taup? 8. In Ancient Greek and Roman…