14 November 2017

A Child's Grace - Bruce Mason

Granddad and Hannah

I once came across a poem by Bruce Mason, one of New Zealand's well known playwrights. He wrote, among many other plays, "The End of the Golden Weather" and "The Pohutukawa Tree" in the late 1950s, both quintessential New Zealand plays.  The poem was published in Kapiti Poems in 1994 - after Bruce Mason's death.

I like the idea of a grace now and then to acknowledge the production of a fine meal and remind us that it doesn't 'just happen'. But not necessarily with the religious connotations.

This fits the bill so I memorised it and trot it out now and again.

A quintessential New Zealand grace, perhaps.

Here it is as it was in Kapiti Poems.


When our daughter was eight years, she visited friends who said grace, and she asked why we as a family did not. We explained. She then asked her father if he would write one just for her. Here it is.

Diana Mason

A Child’s Grace

From air and soil,
From bees and sun,
From others’ toil,
My bread is won.

And when I bite,
The soil, the air,
The bees and light
Are still all there.

So I must think
Each day afresh,
How food and drink
Became my flesh.

And then I’ll see
The great big sun
The earth, the bee
And me, all one.

Bruce Mason

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