Tamworth Rage Page
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"Australian Country Poems"
2004-2005
Please send a poem to me by e-mail to ragepage@bigpond.com  half way through 2005 each poem will be judged and the winner will receive a small prize.
 Here is a picture of part of the Macleay River for inspiration to write a poem
 
 
Scroll down for 2004-2005 Poems
 
Winner of 2004-2005 Poetry Competition
Thanks for the opportunity to judge the 2004 Tamworth Rage Page Poetry Competition.
I am pleased to announce the winner of this years competition is poem number 1
Meg Hayes
"Drought Breaker"
Congratulations Meg !!
I find it to be a moving poem and being written by a year seven student made it even more enjoyable
I wish all the poets well for the future.
Yours in Poetry,
Lenny'
Len Knight
Congratulations Meg Hayes!!
Winning poem of the 2004 - 2005 competition is "Drought Breaker" number 1 by Meg Hayes from Queensland who was in Year Seven at St Mary’s Primary School
"Drought Breaker "
As the farmer knelt down on the salty sand,
He needed rain to save his land.
The crops were wilting, the cattle all dead,
He looked around, not a word was said.

The ground was dry, where is the rain?
What could stop this worthless pain?
The farmer cursed in sheer despair,
He did not have a drop to spare.

A thundercloud covers the western sky,
A bolt of lightning explodes near by.
The farmer looks up and begins to pray,
Hoping that the rain will come his way.

Then drip-by-drip it starts to fall,
The crystal water like a clear glass wall.
The trees and flowers all in bloom,
Then once again, gone is the gloom.

The water fills the old parched creek,
The rivers bulge as the waters peak.
The mud squelches through the farmer’s dry old hands,
As he thanks the Lord for saving his land.
 
By Meg Hayes (c) Year Seven
St Mary’s Primary School,
 
Scroll down for 2004-2005 Poems
 
Roz Schwenke
Roz Schwenke
"I'M PROUD TO BE AN AUSSIE", this CD is sure to bring you laughter, and tears, as she takes you on her own personal journey through life. No-one tells it quite the way Roz does.  Produced by Bill & Cazna Goodall on the independent CABLE label, the album is already receiving airplay, and will add a touch of sunshine to your collection. Available via email: rozschwenke@dodo.com.au
 
                    
Click on photo to read some     Bert has won this competition in Winner of 2001-2002
 of Robert Raftery poetry         Poetry Competition  - Email - bertnjudy@hunterlink.net.au
 
Bush Poets Chris and The Grey 
www.bushpoets.go.to    bushpoets@go.to     Bush Poet News with Merv Webster (A.B.B.A Bush Poet Rep)
http://www.bushballadeers.com.au/bushpoet.htm 
Merv Webster is about to release his first bush ballad E.P. called The Bushman and The Balladeer. 
Two songs he wrote as a tribute to R.M.Williams and Slim Dusty.
Congratulations!!!! Merv on winning the Katherine Country Music Muster
Decided to have my first go at entering a song writing competition and entered the Lyrics Only Section at the Katherine Country Music Muster and was one of the five finalists and blow me down I took out the winning entry with my song Chasing Buttons.
Cheers Merv Webster
2005 Stockman Statue Written Competition.
Download entry forms and information HERE
Bush Poet's Breakfast hosted by Chris & The Grey.
FAR NORTH BUSH POETRY FESTIVAL
Festival Written & Performance Competitions.
Download entry forms and information HERE
Work Shop - Concert and Bush Poet's Breakfast.
 

Mel Sommers has written a book "The Time of My Life" $12, two of which goes to the Leukaemia foundation.   This is an autobiography of his early life.     Also his fine collection of Australian Verse.   

 
PO BOX 124 BOOLAROO
Phone 49581995
 
Click here Great Unique Wood Carvings for Sale
 
Congratulations to Eddie O'Hara "Brave Little Willie Wagtail" is  on the very prominent Nursery Rhyme Land site in the U.S.  With fantastic graphics, too!  http://www.iyway.com/pebbles_frogs_rhymes/willieicon.html    He also has another Rhyme accepted by a marvellous Rhymes site in the UK. The site is called Nursery Rhymes, Lyrics And Origins. It's a fantastic site so I'm really pleased!
Hyperlink:  
http://www.rhymes.org.uk/b1-stan-mccanns-dinner.htm

2004 - 2005
Ragepage Competition
Poem 45
Looking Back

I put my thoughts down on this paper,
And move them around so they rhyme.
I write about things that I have seen and done,
...Well I try to most of the time

It is hard to paint the true picture,
Though its good to be somewhere near right.
But I saw it and did it in colour,
You will read it in plain black and white.

In my mind I can still see the sun rise,
As I ride down the fence line due east,
And I hobbled the horse by the dry water course,
The burnt stew for tea was a feast.

The way we lived then was quite simple,
No worries to furrow the brow.
Do you remember the girl with the dimple?
She’d be sixty years old about now.

I can still smell the grease as we fix a bore pump,
the sound of the wind in the fan.
There’s the ring of the axe as we grub out a stump,
the taste of lunch from an old frying pan.

As you read this, you can only see words,
I can live it all over again!
As the smell and sights and sounds of the birds
Can flow from the tip of my pen.
G.E. Dasborough (c)
 
Poem 44
A Tribute To The Unknown Soldier
Bugle Calls
A soldier falls
Poppies worn
Hats adorn
Tears flow
Eyes aglow
Unknown name
Who's to blame

A nation's pride
Mates side by side
Without dissent
They all went
Gave up life
Children and wife
Our son from the past
Lord make him the last.

Peter Michael Seal
Copyright ©2005
Tel: (02) 62877085

 
Poem 43
The Dunny is an icon of Australia. Dunnies belonged in backyards until modernisation saw
 them move indoors – but the real dunny in the bush remained ‘up the back’ for much longer,
and still exists in a lot of country areas. The old ‘one-holer’ was a common sight,
but there existed a good number of two-holers such as . . . . .      

DOYLEY’S DOUBLE DUNNY
Doyle owned a service station on a God-forsaken track,
’twas somewhere up the country, just a little bit outback.
Travellers often came his way, and surely when they did
they’d be busting for the dunny, every woman, man and kid.
 
Most blokes were ever happy just to go behind a tree -
but folks elite would much prefer a toilet when they pee.
But trees were rare on Doyley’s plain, not one for fifty kays, 
whilst privacy behind a car was not part of their ways.
 
The double-dunny Doyley owned, to most, was quite a treat,
and lady-like, all dainty dames would have to have a seat.
But duets on the dunny didn’t favour everyone -  
except on odd occasions such as mother, daughter, son.
 
Old Doyley was a crafty one and always loved a joke;
he always had a welcome smile and yarn each time he spoke;
he’d tell outrageous stories that went far beyond belief;
and make blokes laugh and lose control before they’d had relief.
 
One time a little family from the east coast passing through,
forgot their youngster’s little toy - thought Doyley, ‘what to do’?
He found this item rather odd, in fact a trifle strange,
a plastic walkie-talkie set with modest half mile range. 
 
But how to handle such a thing, when living all alone?
With no one else to talk to it was useless on his own.
The old place needed jazzing up, he thought he’d try a prank;
he screwed one handpiece to the loo beneath the sitting plank
 
The first old girl to use the dyke, most unsuspectingly
sat calmly on the wooden throne until, surprisingly,
she up and bolted out the door along the waiting queue,
a’ bounding like a boomer as most hobbled ladies do.
 
Her old man quickly ran her down, and asked the reason why
she took off from the dunny with her strides below her thigh.
She swore she heard a fellow speak – from down below her rear -
“Please use the other hole, old girl -- I’m painting under here!”
(c) © Frank Daniel 2.7.2002
 President Australian Bush Poets Association
 Go to www.bushpoetry.com.au
Poem 42
The Powers Of The Sea.
As tsunami waves came crashing,
To the homes above the shore,
And family lives were broken,
Like nothing seen before.
On that day of devastation,
By the oceans rising tide,
Many people were left homeless,
Well as many thousands died.
The shock of what had happened,
In the future, left to be,
When nations come together,
In,"the powers of the sea!.
(c) Duncan Williams.
 
Poem 41
GONE METRIC!
The days have gone when sheep were shorn by methods non-electric;
and bales of wool from fleeces full were weighed in pounds, not metric.
Those days a bloke was never broke while still he owned a shilling,
and work was hard - that extra yard - though most of us were willing.

Each hungry mob we'd drift to rob the paddock never-ending;
we'd nibble miles with dawdled smiles, while industry-pretending.
For bed and keep we'd follow sheep till evening skies were glowing,
then dream of pubs with gallon tubs we'd shout from what was owing.

And every Fall we'd meet the call to harness up for seeding,
and chase the gleam behind a team to turn the sod for weeding.
With super spread on seeded bed we'd raise the boss's chances;
applying rates of hundredweights to feed his sprouting lances.

Those waving plains of golden grains were optimistic tidings;
when strippers crept, the acres reapt were bagged and stacked at sidings:
three bushel bags - the shoulder sags and faster blood is pumping;
how strong and tall, I well recall, were men who did the lumping.

A bob or two would get us through the gates to major sporting;
a crown would buy a shirt and tie to spruce you up for courting.
And if the girl was soft as pearl, with signs of growing keener,
you'd stretch your pay for clip and spray, an extra shiny dinar.

With fifty quid a bloke could bid on snug accommodation,
or raise the loan to build his own - and never mind inflation.
We surely knew no money grew on magic vegetation:
its value stood for something in our young emerging nation.

We ran the joke that city folk count finger-tens for dozens;
but decimals were hardly pals of all us country cousins:
the lowered yields of stock and fields in kilos had us troubled;
and on one hand, they halved our land - while mortgages were doubled!!

The change to fuel was just as cruel (if one could read the meter);
a bloke got lost converting cost from cents per flaming litre!
Still, rainfall gauge of fool or sage would best predict his chances;
in millimetres or in points, their raindrops held the answers.

The days have gone, by crikey, when as kiddies chanting tables,
we learned to score by twelves and more - without the chips and cables;
when rod or perch was carved from birch, or measured land for cropping,
and breaking rules like wagging schools was sure to earn a whopping;

when thirty miles on dashboard dials could have you booked for speeding -
a ding or flat at rates like that would rarely get you bleeding.
Those days have gone - we've seen the dawn of life too blooming hectic;
the world we had has gone quite mad, gone missing - and GONE METRIC!

A flock of ears consume the thoughts
that tumble from my lips;
like seagulls at the beachside when
I spill my bag of chips.

© Max Merckenschlager
 
Poem 40
The Peewee
 That peewee is still crashing
into the window pane.
It's driving me quite barmy -
There it goes again.
 
If I open up the window,
I know just what he'll do.
He'll move across to where it's slid
and start to tap anew!
 
I know he's needing counselling,
or a major change of diet, 
But heaven knows, no cure comes cheap,
though 1OO's rush to try it.
 
Perhaps I'll leave some brochures round 
to aid his mental health,
and hope the penny drops quite soon
that there really is a wealth
 
of other useful things to do
besides bang into glass.
If not we'll read of  "he who tapped"
in a peewee epitaph!
 
HELEN MORRIS 18/11/O2  (C)
Poem 39
Rash Move
My son was burning up and getting hotter by degrees,
As Tylenol and tepid baths did little to appease.
The skerrick that went down the hatch was soon up – in the bucket.
A hiccup on our holiday? It seemed we might have struck it.
 
Because we shared a little van, I hoped it would pass quick.
I wasn’t in a panic though, as kids are often sick…
Until I saw those neat, red dots, adorning arms and legs.
 – “Chicken Pox!” I wildly thought, “He’s got them, sure as eggs.”
 
The learned health professional, consulted on the spot,
Was quick to say, (to my relief!) that “Chicken Pox it’s not.”
He diagnosed a virus, though just what, Doc wasn’t sure.
That rash was unlike any he had come across before.
 
Prescribing medicine to keep the vomiting at bay,
The doctor then advised that we enjoy our holiday.
Well as the day proceeded, I was quite surprised to find
Those speckles faded out of sight, which eased my anxious mind!
 
Much wiser now, with hindsight, I confess that I was rash,
To seize my spotted son and seek the doctor at a dash.
Those dots, which came on suddenly, and gave me such a fright,
Weren’t symptoms of the virus – they were merely sandfly bite!
 © Kathryn Apel 2003 
Poem  38
The Feral Ute
A feral ute they claim it is
But it wasn’t always so
It once was clean and shiny
It was new and all the go

There was gleaming paint and chrome work
No dirt could there be found
Not even in the ash tray
Today, that’s sacred ground

I drove it really carefully
As you always do
And always went out of my way
To drive around the poo

Inevitably one fateful day
A scratch it did appear
And as I bawled me eyes out Mum said
“There, it’s alright dear”

By and bye more marks appeared
And slowly over time
Just one more scratch or dent you see
Didn’t seem like such a crime

Now down the track as years went on
It fell into a mess
So I sent it to the workshop
Where they’d clean it up, I guess

It came out looking mighty fine
And drove and went real good
But then again for what it cost
I suppose it bloody should

Years lingered on for this old girl
And over all the while
We re-place-ed the this and that
And did it with a smile

And again the dents and scratches came
All the while there getting worse
But it got beyond the fixin’ stage
No more dollars in me purse
So to the scrub we took y’see
Down tracks and creeks aghast
There were times we almost lost it
We were going so bloody fast

Because we drove her very hard
And hadn’t really cared
The old girl she got knocked around
No panel could be spared

The doors were shut with wire ties
No springs were in the seat
We had to bash the mudguards out
It wasn’t lookin’ neat

Off to the ute mus-ter we went
We were lookin’ for a prize
She went in with the ferule utes
To try that on for size

We hadn’t any bloody hope
We thought we were all cursed
There was no one more surprised than us
When the old girl she got first

The trophy now has pride of place
To be ad-mired by one and all
It’s placed in a secure spot
No chance that it will fall

She’s all done now, she’s had her day
And no more can she do
I’ll put her out to pasture now
Down near the outside loo

So now she’s down behind the shed
Looking up towards the house
So she can see me anytime
And think of times so “grouse”

So, it’s back down to the shop I trudge
To see what was on show
To buy a clean and shiny ute
That’s new and all the go

Don Stratford © 23 / 2 / 2005

 
Poem 37
INGRID
The message screamed ‘cross T.V. screen; now listen up you folk,
You have a “Blowie” coming see ;and this one ain’t no joke.
You’d best go batten down your place ;this wind it could be wild,
And it will not take pity on no beast or man or child.

‘Cause never yet has nature’s like; descended on your shore,
if so, it’s not recorded yet ; in White or Blackman’s Lore.
Two ninty plus plus these winds will be; the likes you’ve never seen,
And nought will stand before it’s might; the land will lie ripped clean.

The missus was in panic mode; the clothes and first aid kit
She whacked into a traveling bag so we could could quickly split.
I said if things get scary now; you load up all the dogs,
I’ll get all the important things ; me lighter , smokes, and grog.

Make sure you’ve packed my bowling bag and ‘Kubra cowboy hat,
And don’t forget the poet tapes, that’s most important that.
You grab the rock collection now, the gun behind the seat,
Throw in a tin of bully beef in case you need to eat.

I said no room for photographs; camera, Tee Vee, or likes,
I wanna be away old girl before this bludger strikes.
I’ll have to travel light and fast; from this tempestuous plight,
I’ve filled the esky up with grog to help the car ride right.

The track will be quite waterlogged, of that I have no doubt,
The howling wind and lashing rain, will make us slip about.
I think it would be sensible , for you to be prepared,
So pack a dunny roll my dear,  for when you get real scared.

We won’t have time for comfort stops though vision does enthral,
It would be a hell of a sight, bare bum in all that squall.
Just imagine the paperwork, scant time for one quick swipe,
With all the wind and rain about it shouldn’t need a wipe

Now discretion ain't my strong point; I can be quite blas’e
And when it comes to some advice I’m thick as bricks they say.
I’ve been through a cyclone or two I’ll have you bloody know,
So I’ll just wait for this big wind; so blow you howler blow.

But I kept an eye on Ingrid, and checked projected scathe
My trusty map and compass said we’re clear of natures’ lathe
Forecasters had it to the south, by eighty k’s or more,
So Lockhart would not bear the brunt of it’s destructive core

They turned off our ‘lectricity; the radio was out’
I think someone had jumped the gun; of that I had no doubt,
They had us blown to hell and gone before this windy might,
I just sunk down in to the bed and pulled the doona tight.
Byron Kirby from Lockhart River
Poem 36
The sound of the country music
The sound of the country music
sounds in my ear, As I line dance
feel the music and the beat
I dance to the waltz like I'm dreaming
the feel the beat the sound of the country music
whispering in my ear as I dance
I dance to the beat
side by side in lines all to country music
beat by beat we dance side by side in lines.
here the music, here the music,
as we dance and drift to space
here the music and dance to the beautiful country
and waltz drift to air and fill the beat and that beautiful country dance.
By Tanya busher (c)
 
Poem 35
The Moonshine Grey
 
Well the bush bunch had a race horse,
a sway backed , short winded grey.
Even less appealing, than old "Radish,"
the cartoon horse, from yesterday.

And most doubted, it was fully broken,
with a cruel mouth cast iron hard,
Totally wayward, so foul of disposition,
it sometimes wouldn’t budge a yard..

It would camp draft all other runners,
shouldering them along the rails.
Would drive hoofs into the attendants,
buck the wind, from jockey’s sails.

Seemed the only way to turn it mellow,
was raw moonshine, from the still.
Just fill the horse’s trough with buckets,
then let that beastie drink it’s fill.

Wild eyes would lose their raging fire,
though veins protruded cherry red.
Horse would stand about cross legged,
docile, too drunk to raise it’s head.

Track work, long before the dawning,
drag the grey mongrel out to train.
The hoop would ride the beastie sober,
then feed it moonshine, once again.

An odd training process oft’ repeated,
the horse kept mellow, in this way.
booze intake in the vicinity of barrels,
rivers of raw moonshine, every day.

So the bush bunch, held a discussion,
with all the top yobbos in the mob,
about the aspects of equine training,
and the devious ways to win a bob.

Agreed their grey horse was alcoholic,
it couldn’t function ,without grog,
Said the yobbos, train it by rewarding,
the way you’d train a bloody dog,

And they noted at most the race tracks,
sponsor’s logos, near the finish line,
Were often huge pictures of their bottles,
of spirits, beer, and sparkling wine.

Then they pondered, and they haggled,
till those more brilliant, in the clan,
Brought forth a solution to the problem,
a simple formula , a ripper of a plan.

These signs would be the key inspiration,
the desired destination, for the horse.
They’d stand similar at his drink trough,
ten furlongs down a training course.

They would defer his morning’s drinking,
so his throat turned parched and dry.
Then parade full buckets there before him,
’til sights of moonshine caught his eye.

Then with the hoop and handlers holding,
they would drive off, down the way.
The horse’s vision frozen, eyes held captive,
focussed, on the grog in full display.

Eyes opening slowly wider, glowing redder,
watched it heading down the track.
All his body tensing, the muscles bunching,
while powerful yobbos held him back.
 
Then training barriers crashed, wide open,
those straining yobbos pushed instead.
The hoop swung the leather whip persuader,
crouched, then gave the grey his head.

Like a duck to water, or an eagle to its nest,
gone, swift as a cheetah in full flight.
Rushing, to be standing with head lowered,
guzzling all moonshine held in sight.

So where it saw the logos waving trackside,
that drunken horse soon grew to know,
The faster it could gallop out race distance,
the more rewarding alcohol would flow.

Truly it had breeding, but no form to show,
even still a maiden, a total also ran..
The bargain purchase, a raging alcoholic,
was named "Prohibition", by the clan .

No trials or lead up races, for "Prohibition",
the first up plunge, their betting ploy.
"We’ll just slap it on, we’ll break the bookies"
confident, trainer down to stable boy.

They paid the nomination, a minor matter,
as the yobbos prepared to win the cup.
The horse, kept teetotal, stood almost sober,
watching, as they legged the jockey up.

His parched throat, burned like hell’s fires,
his eyes misted crimson in his head,
all attention focussed on the distant logos.
and that moonshine trough ahead.

Race records tumbled, the big horse flying,
a missile, rushed out at barrier rise.
Tore down the grassy track, unchallenged ,
toward disappointment, and surprise.

He flashed past the finish post, gaze lowered,
no trough of liquor caught his eye .
All his benevolence like a flash evaporated,
there stood the beast of days gone by.

He stood with ears laid back upon his head,
his bloodshot eyes all mean and hard.
Four feet splayed outwards gaining leverage,
"Prohibition", refused to move a yard .

A hush fell, those yobbos all stopped cheering,
for weight must be declared of course.
And stewards cannot weigh a hoop or saddle,
with both held to ransom, by the horse.

There’s a moral to the story, forget the yobbos,
plans of mice and men, oft’ go astray.
Pity that maiden horse, who’s barred forever,
the former alcoholic, ‘moonshine grey’.

[C.].Copyright: Bernard de Silva.
 
Poem 34
 THE MIGHTY MACLEAY
She watches fisherfolk meet her, in hope of a mighty catch
And if she’s in the mood old mate she might release a batch

She’ll let you climb her muddy bank, her reeds will suck your feet
Don’t let her taste your septic tank or her fish will be spoiled meat.

She doesn’t find you int’resting so please don’t act the lair
If you fall within her reach you’ll find she doesn’t care

She’ll sweep you right along with her on currents you cannot fight
Just as she does any other debris to get you gone from sight

She’s intimate with anyone who tries to get within her
But if you think you know her she’ll have you for her dinner

She’s dignified, self assured, and mostly acts her age
Unless she gets into a mood, then you’ll see her rage

She loves to show herself in colours bright and sparkling
But watch out for those storm clouds, see the colours darkening

She has no jealousy or spite, devoid of all emotion
Love her if you really must, but don’t expect devotion

She’ll run along the riverbank, teasing all who looked
But she’ll run right out into the sea before she can be hooked

She is the perfect lover, if you leave she won’t gainsay
No wonder they call her mighty, the one they named Macleay
© Copyright 2005 Carolyn Mills
 
Poem 33
The Farm Hands
 The farmhands would sit around the campfire at night
Old Jack played the banjo with Stu,
Herbie he was the singer he could belt out a tune or two,
 
Then we would have a few drinks and reminisce of days gone by on the land,
Of the laughter and tears and all through the years they were the best times we ever had.
 
©Maree Cochrane 2005
 
Poem 32
THE SHED

A mans’ gotta have a shed y’know
A place he calls his own
Where he can go and loose himself
Like a king upon his throne

It can be neat and tidy
With everything in place
Or one un –wholly bloody mess
Where there isn’t any space

But you can rest assured old friend
No matter how it fares
It’s his domain and castle
Down to the worn out chairs

He proudly shows it to his mates
Who goo and gar and ask
What’s this and that you got in here
Including in the flask

There’s pictures stuck up on the wall
The likes that women scorn
But it wouldn’t be the same you see
Without his female porn

And if someone dare to take control
Woe betide the feathers fly
Until he once again can say
Don’t come in here and pry

When it’s why on this one fateful day
A hapless brown came in
And all that happened after that
Boy, you should have heard the din

Jo blake slipped here and he slipped there
To keep out of old mates way
But old mate was having none of that
As he entered in the fray

Things they went here and they went there
As the chase in-ten-si-fied
With old mate going hell for leather
To get that snake outside

Almost a full one hour had gone
And neither would give in
The snake kept just enough in front
To save it’s slippery skin

Until it spied a big wide space
That was in fact the door
And slipped out quick as anything
Away from that bloody floor

When old mate stopped and looked around
When the battle was complete
He couldn’t believe the mess there was
He was out to it on his feet

But satisfaction slowly grew
Sweat began to dis-si-pate
As he softly whispered to himself
I’ll not share with any snake

So, take heed all those who enter there
And know it’s in his head
He’ll do whatever it does take
To defend his bloody shed
Don Stratford © 18 / 2 / 2005
Poem 31
Outta My Memory
I was driving down the highway
looking for my driveway
had a six-pack too much this day.
Coulda sworn I turned right
but it seems that I might
have gone ahead and turned the other way!

Well, I pulled up to this yard
and I put ‘er into park
got outta my truck to see.
And as I looked around
it was plain to me, I found
this ain’t the place I wanted to be!

Seems like I goofed again
I sure hope it’s my friend’s
place I was parking on.
‘Cause I can plainly see
this ain’t no place to be…

I sure as heck ain’t on my farm!
Lord knows what my wife would think
if she only knew how much I drink
‘cause I told her I’d be home by ten.
But by good golly
I done turned wrong at Main Street
and ended up at my ex-girlfriend’s!

O Lord, here goes that feeling again.
Seems like it never escapes me.
I can’t go on like this…
… please grant me just one wish…
… and take ‘er outta my memory!

And when it occurred to me
this ain’t no place I wanna be
I jumped back into my pickup truck.
I put ‘er in first gear
and I sped on outta there
laying tire marks and kicking up dust!

But in my rearview mirror
I did stare in utter terror
at a car… it was a followin’ me.
And all I could think about
it was my ex-girlfriend, no doubt
and she was out to cause me misery!

O Lord, here goes that feeling again.
Seems like it never escapes me.
I can’t go on like this…
… please grant me just one wish…
… and take ‘er outta my memory!

But back on that dark highway
before I pulled into my driveway
I lost that car somehow in the night.
Then reality came back to me
as I fumbled for my front door key
that me and my wife are gonna fight!

‘Cause now it’s way past ten
and she don’t know ‘bout my ex-girlfriend
and all that I had just gone through.
If I could have just one wish
I sure wish I could extinguish
the memory of my ex-girlfriend, Peggy-Sue!

O Lord, here goes that feeling again.
Seems like it never escapes me.
I can’t go on like this…
… please grant me just one wish…
… and take ‘er outta my memory!

Copyrighted 2001 by Stephen Ray Leitzell
Poem 30
GIZZA – THE BIG SWILLER KILLER
-------------------------------------------------
A POMMIE CALLED PAT WALKED INTO A BAR
SAID, “STUFF THE HANDLE…GIMME A JAR”;
THEN SCOFFED THE LOT WITH ONE EASY SWILL,
“I’LL TAKE ALL-COMERS …AT LEISURE OR WILL.”

HEADS WERE TURNED, COMMENTS WERE MADE,
“WHO’S THIS TWIT!?” (FROM THE BAR PARADE);
“I’LL TAKE YOU ON..” FROM ONE FLAMIN’ MUG,
“PIECE O’ PISS….OUT WITH THE JUG.”

THEY LINED ‘EM UP AND BETS WERE LAID,
THE POMMIE OR BRUCE, ONE’D BE PAID;
“BOTTOMS UP,” FROM PAT WAS HEARD…
“SAME TO YOU, YAH BLOODY GREAT TURD.”

THE JUGS WENT DOWN, THE BELCHES ERUPT…
AND PAT’S STAYED DOWN WHILE BRUCE THREW UP;
“WON’T BE A MINUTE,” SAID PAT WITH A SMILE,
THEN INTO THE DUNNY TO WEE A WHILE.

WHEN HE RETURNED “NEXT PLEASE” HE SAID,
FOR BRUCE WAS VIRTUALLY RIGHT ON HIS HEAD;
THEN PADDY ROLLED UP WITH HIS ROLLING GAIT…
“SIX MORE JUGS!…I’LL DO YAH, MATE.”

PADDY WAS GOOD…GOTTA GIVE HIM THAT,
HE DID OVER TWO BUT HIS THIRD WENT FLAT;
“THEY CALL IT ‘LIFE’, AND YOU GOTTA BE IN IT..”
ROARED PAT AT THE DUNNY FOR ANOTHER MINUTE.

THE BARKEEP LEERED WITH EYES AGOG,
RUBBING HIS HANDS AT SELLING HIS GROG;
“SEND OUT WORD TO FAR AND NEAR,
IF SOMEONE CAN BEAT HIM, HE’S BUYING THE BEER!!”

FROM EAST AND WEST AND NORTH AND SOUTH,
THEY CAME AND TRIED THIS POMMIE MOUTH;
“TRY ME, MATE,” HE’D SAY WITH A SMILE,
THEN LEAVE ‘EM LYING FLAT IN THE AISLE.

IT WAS NOTICED HIS FACE WAS A MASK OF BLISS
ON RETURN FROM THE DUNNY FROM HIS HIT-AND-A-MISS;
FIFTEEN JUGS’D SENT LAMBS TO THE SLAUGHTER…
FIFTEEN JUGS PAT’D PASSED OUT AS WATER.


A BREAK FOR A MEAL….A BREAK FOR A SLEEP…
“HOW LONG CAN HE LAST?” SAID THE OLD BARKEEP;
“HE’S TOO BLOODY GOOD FOR THEM THAT HE PICKS,”
THEN ‘GIZZA-GO’ GIZZA RODE IN FROM THE STICKS.

GIZZA WAS KNOWN AS A BLUDGER …AND MORE,
WITH A BLOODY GREAT GUT LIKE OLD BILLY’S BOAR;
“GIDDAY,” HE BELCHED AS HE GOT OFF HIS STEED,
“GIZ-A-GO AT A JUG AND GIZ-US A FEED.”

A BREATHLESS HUSH FELL OVER THE ROOM…
PATRONS FELL BACK ’STHOUGH SWEPT BY A BROOM;
WOULD HE TAKE HIM ON? COULD HE SAVE OUR FACE?
AS WELL THEY KNEW, PAT COULD STAND ANY PACE.

YET, GIZZA, HE NEVER COULD BREAST THE BAR…
HE WAS SIX-FOOT FOUR, TOO TALL BY FAR;
BUT I’LL TELL YOU WHAT….HE WAS NOBODY’S FOOL
’CAUSE HE’D HANG HIS GUT ON THE NEAREST BAR-STOOL.

“PLEASED TO MEETCHA,” CAME CURRY AND BREATH..
“YAH RECKON YAH GOOD? I’M SCARED TO DEATH!!!”
HE QUAFFED A JUG, A HEADACHE RECOVERY…
SAID, “BLOODY GOOD STUFF….NOW GIZ-US ANOTHERY.”

PAT JUST MUMBLED,”YOU GOT THE HABIT?”
GIZZA CAME BACK WITH, “GIZ-US A GO AT IT.”
TWO JUGS CROPPED UP….TWO HANDS REACHED OUT…
IT PROMISED TO BE A REAL BOOZERS’ BOUT.

GIZZA RAN DRY AFTER ONE BIG GULP,
SMACKED HIS LIPS WITH A TONGUE LIKE PULP;
AND PAT, HE CHECKED AND SAID WITH A SIGH,
“HOOLY DOOLY! THAT WAS ONE GOOD-BYE.”

“GIZ-US ANOTHER…I’VE A THIRST OF A CAMEL…
LIKE TITS RUN DRY ON A DRONGO MAMMAL” ;
HE SHIFTED HIS GUTS TO A BRAND NEW POSITION
AND SETTLED HIS MIND FOR A GREAT EXHIBITION.

“WHERE ’RE YOU GOIN’ ??” CRIED GIZ IN ALARM
WHEN PAT SNUCK OFF TO THE OLD DUNNY FARM;
“ANOTHER JUG’S WAITIN’…LET’S STICK TO THE TEXT!
WRAP YAH LAUGHIN’ GEAR ROUND ’CAUSE IT’S YOUR SHOUT NEXT!”

NOW PAT WAS GOOD AS WELL WE’VE SEEN,
AND GIZZA, WELL, HE WASN’T GREEN;
BUT PAT, WHEN HE WAS ONE JUG THROUGH,
WELL GIZZA, HE HAD GONE THROUGH TWO.

JUG FOR JUG THEY FACED EACH OTHER,
GIZZA WAS WINNING AND BLESSING HIS MOTHER;
AND GIZZA’S GREAT GUT, ONCE MENTIONED BEFORE,
WAS NOW SWELLING BIGGER THAN OLD BILLY’S BOAR.

PAT TRIED AND TRIED TO GET TO THE DUNNY,
AND GIZZA WAS THINKING, “THERE’S SOMETHING FUNNY…”;
THEN PAT GAVE UP…( NOT LACKING OF THIRST…
JUST GENUINELY WORRIED HIS BLADDER MIGHT BURST.)

“GIZZA, ME BOY, YOU’VE DRUNK ME OUT…
AND FOR ALL THIS GROG I’LL HAVE TO SHOUT;
IF YOU’D SLOWED DOWN I’D’VE STOOD A CHANCE….
IF I’D TRIED TO KEEP UP I’D’VE WET ME PANTS!”

A MIGHTY ROAR THEN RENT THE AIR,
A DOG STOPPED SCRATCHING AT ITS MANGY HAIR;
A WHITE COCKATOO AND A GREY-RED GALAH
SCREETCHED THEIR PRAISES WITH “BLOODY HOORAH”!

PAT WALKED OUT WITH THE SPRING OF A CORSET,
STOOD FIVE FULL MINUTES WITH FAST FLOWING FAUCET;
GIZZA STRODE OUT AND PARTNERED HIM THERE…
TOGETHER IN SOLACE THEY DRAINED THEMSELVES BARE.

“YOU’RE A BLOODY GOOD DRINKER, PAT, ME OLD MATE,”
SAID GIZZA AS BOTH STROLLED OUT OF THE GATE;
WITH MUTUAL RESPECT THEY WENT DOWN THE STREET…
“SAME TO YOU GIZ…FIRST TIME I’VE BEEN BEAT.”

SAID GIZZA TO PAT, “BEFORE YOU SHOOT THROUGH,
WHY DID YOU SPEND ALL THAT TIME IN THE LOO?!”
AND LOOKING AT GIZZA, PAT SWALLOWED AND SAID,
“GIZZA, ME MATE, THIS MOMENT I DREAD.

WHEN I WAS BORN I WAS DIFFERENT, YOU SEE,
MY INTESTINE TUBES RAN STRAIGHT AND RAN FREE;
NOT TWISTING AND TURNING LIKE YOURS DO, OL’ MATE,
BUT STRAIGHT AS A DIE FROM MY THROAT TO MY DATE!!”

© TERRY BROOKS
 
Poem 29
GIZZA
---------
GIZZA WAS QUITE A REMARKABLE BLOKE
WELL KNOWN OVER LAND NEAR AND FAR;
HE DIDN’T USE MANY WORDS WHEN HE SPOKE
WHENEVER HE STOOD AT THE BAR.

GIZZA WAS KNOWN , NOT ONLY FOR BOOZE,
THERE WERE TALES OF CHIVALROUS DEEDS;
FAIR MAIDENS AND FAMILIES THEY OFT MADE THE NEWS
OF RESCUES… AND LITTLE KIDS NEEDS.

BELCHING OR COUGHING WOULD DRAW THE BARKEEP
TO ATTEND TO THIS FINE COUNTRY MAN;
HE’D HURRY WITH GLASS, GIZZA’S TONGUE SO TO STEEP,
LIKE A FLY TO A RIPE DUNNY-CAN.

“GIZ-US ANOTHERY, ” OLD GIZZA WOULD SAY
BEFORE THE BARKEEP HAD WITHDRAWN;
“A MAN NEEDS A BEER ON A HOT SUMMER’S DAY…
MAKES UP FOR THE SHEEP I’VE JUST SHORN.”

SITTING ALONE AT A TABLE OUTSIDE
SAT A JOURNO WITH PENCIL IN HAND;
WORKING UP COURAGE JUST HOW HE’D DECIDE
HIS APPROACH TO THIS GIANT OF A MAN.

HE CROSSED FROM HIS TABLE AND WALKED TO THE DOOR,
HE DARED A QUICK LOOK IN THE BAR;
THERE STOOD THE GIZZA, FEET FIRM ON THE FLOOR,
IN THONGS LOOKING QUITE LIKE THE CZAR.

HIS ‘T’ SHIRT WAS STRETCHING, AND RAISED JUST ABOVE
A NAVEL INVERTED AND ROUND;
THE HOLE WAS SO HUGE, GIZZA’S FIST HE COULD SHOVE
TO THE REAR…’TIL HIS BACKBONE HE FOUND.

TWO JUGS IN HIS HANDS THE JOURNO APPROACHED
WHERE GIZZA HAD PLACED DOWN HIS GLASS;
THE JOURNO, NO MATTER WHAT SUBJECT HE BROACHED,
WELL KNEW HE WAS DEALING WITH CLASS.

“GIDDAY ME OL’ MATE…GIZ A CRACK AT YOUR JUGS,”
THIS ENCOUNTER WAS OPENED BY GIZZ;
SNAKING ARM ROUND A SHOULDER THE YOUNG MAN HE HUGS,
“AND I’LL BET YOU’RE A JOURNO, GEE WHIZ!?”

WITH EYES THAT WERE WIDENED THE JOURNO REPLIED,
“YOU’RE RIGHT SIR. BY WHAT SHOULD I CALL YOU?
AND HOW DID YOU KNOW WHAT I AM ’CAUSE I TRIED
TO MAKE SURE THAT NOBODY KNEW!?”

“ GIZ-US SOME CREDIT ME YOUNG JOURNO MATE
KNOW YOU I’VE BEEN ROUND QUITE A BIT;
YOU’VE PENCIL AND PAD, WHEN YOU SPEAK YOU NARRATE,
AND YOUR SHOES HAVE BEEN POLISHED WITH SPIT.

BUT, JUST CALL ME GIZZA AND PULL UP A STOOL
AND DRINK A FINE DRINK WITH ME NOW.”
“GIZZA I THANK YOU, I FEEL SUCH A FOOL…
HOWEVER, I’LL MANAGE SOMEHOW.

HOW CAN IT BE FROM THE TALES THAT I’VE HEARD
THAT YOUR FAME IS SIMPLY NOT FOUND?
I’M KEEN, DON’T YOU KNOW, AND I’LL PEN IN THE WORD
AND I’LL PRINT IT IN BOOK LEATHERBOUND.”

THEY TALKED ALL NIGHT, ’TIL THE ’KEEP CLOSED THE SHOP,
THEY DRANK WHILE THE JOURNO MADE NOTES;
PAST-RINGER, PAST-BUSHIE, PAST-POLLIE, PAST-COP,
PAST-BOOKIE WITH ODDS ON THE TOTES.

THE JOURNO, AMAZED AND ASTOUNDED, WAS DONE
’CAUSE GIZZA HAD DRAINED ALL HIS FUNDS;
HE GAWKED AT HIS WALLET…HIS MONEY WAS GONE…
GIZZA’S FACE WAS SERENE LIKE A NUN’S.

ALIGHTING THE STOOL THE JOURNO THEN SPOKE,
“GOSH GIZZA !?? I’M ALL OUT OF MONEY!”
ARISING HIMSELF, GIZZA STOOD NEAR THE BLOKE
AND MUMBLED, “NOW LISTEN HERE, SONNY!

YOU SAYIN’ YOU’VE SPENT ALL YOUR MONEY ON ME?”
WHILE STOMPING THE FLOOR THAT HE STRODE;
“WELL, YEAH…BUT ALL THAT I’M ASKING YOU SEE,
CAN YOU NOT BUY ME ONE FOR THE ROAD?”

“YOUR ROAD HAD RUN OUT A BLOODY WAY BACK,
SO TOUGHO!! ME OLD JOURNO MATE…
NOW I’VE GOTTA RUN, ‘CAUSE I’VE GOTTA GO PACK
AND MEET WITH A PRE-ARRANGED DATE.”

ALAS… THE YOUNG JOURNO, FORLORN AND ALONE,
LOOKED ON AS THE GIZZA LEFT TOWN;
HE FELT THAT HIS BODY’D BEEN PICKED TO THE BONE
BY THIS LEGEND HE’D JUST WRITTEN DOWN.

WHEN GIZZA HAD RIDDEN FOR NUMEROUS MILES
ON HORSE THAT WAS FOAMING AND LATHERED,
IN THE NEIGHBOURING TOWN WITH A FACE FULL OF SMILES
HE ARRIVED WHERE THE SOCIALLY GATHERED.

’TWAS OPENING TIME AND HE’D NEED A CLEAR HEAD
FOR THIS PRE-ARRANGED DATE THAT HE’D SET;
WHEN A YOUNG MAN WITH PENCIL APPROACHED HIM, HE SAID,
“GIDDAY…YOU’RE A JOURNO I’LL BET.”
© TERRY BROOKS
Poem 28
BLOODY” BILL
----------------------
‘Bloody’ this and ‘bloody’ that,
These were the kind of words he spat
On pickled breath that’d knock you flat…
They called him “BLOODY” Bill.

Sometimes he’d ride his horse to town,
With hat he’d swat the Marchflies down
’Til they lay leg-up on the ground…
For “BLOODY” Bill would kill.

Sixty summers, we were told,
Was this fine man for whom the mould
Had long been broken…bless his soul…
He’s old-age standing still.

Asked one day by a tourist bloke
To crack a can and tell a joke,
Obligingly the can he broke…
And laughed at the flowing swill.

“Chuck us a bloody coldie, Shirl,
And a dash of bloody lemon, girl;
By cripes! You’re a bloody bonza pearl…
You’re in my bloody will!”

“Bloody beaudy…(of the singer
On the stage…a real humdinger…
Being ogled by the ringer
Bug-eyed “BLOODY” Bill.)

And then, “My bloody word!” was heard,
“My bloody stars”, and “How absurd!
That bloody sheila’s almost bird!!
Heck! That’s a bloody quill!?”
“So that’s a bloody fan-dance ’ey?
Not too bad this old Broadway;
Well blood’ oath mate, I’m here to stay…
I ’ope she’s on the pill!?”

When asked the time by passers-by,
He’d doff his hat and raise it high
Between the sun and naked eye;
And squint…would “BLOODY” Bill.

His watch within his hat was pinned,
The time he’d tell, then simply grinned
For he had known he had not sinned…
And tourists got their thrill.

Two teenage boys…with music flare!?
A trip they won…but who could care?
Who sent them cash to keep them there?
Why, none but “BLOODY” Bill.

“Bloody mugs with music drafts,
I’d write for them their epitaphs;
And since they’re gone, yah gotta laugh…
What a pair of bloody dills!”

Yarns abounded ’bout this fellah,
Known by all that he could tell a
Jap from Chinee by the yella
Fabric in his twill.

He’s still around out there somewhere,
Fencing, droving, doing his share;
No foes, no woes, he doesn’t care…
God rest ye, “BLOODY” Bill.
© Terry Brooks
Poem  27
DROVER’S HIDEAWAY
 
We set up camp at Jundah, population ninety-eight,
Then walked on to the pub to have a drink before we ate.

Abreast the bar the locals, all who said to us “G’day!”
“Been trav’lling far? How goes it?” and, “What brings you out this way?”

“Just call me Drover Harrison,” a friendly greeting came;
“This here’s my dog, my faithful mate, old Choco is his name.”

We shook his hand, and Choco’s paw, sat down with drink in hand,
While Drover entertained us with some yarns about the land.

Outside the pub, as on our way, he still had tales to tell,
Accompanied us along the road before we bid farewell.

“I spend some time in town here, also at my opal mine;
The camp’s ‘bout 30 miles from here – not too far down the line.

“Why not call there tomorrow – that’s if you be so inclined,
Just fossick round the pits I’ve dug, and pocket what you find?”

He squatted on the ground and drew a mud map in the dirt:
“Some miles along the highway, then round gidyea scrub you’ll skirt.

“Just follow on the track until the hills are close to view –
It’s worth the trip for scenery’s sake: the brown, the green, the blue.

“You’ll find sufficient working tools, there’s water in the dam,
The van’s unlocked but, when you leave, just give the door a slam.

“Go make yourselves at home and put the billy on to boil,
You’ll need a good strong brew if you’ve put in a hard day’s toil.”

So early on the morrow we set off as he had said,
Soon came upon the track which led across the dry creek bed.

We found his camp close to the hills set out as he declared:
So this was Drover’s hideaway which he and Choco shared.

Some folks would see here barren land where life would all but cease,
But we could see through Drover’s eyes its beauty and its peace.

The hills of rocky outcrops, and the spinifex in clumps,
The browns and greens in contrast with the smooth-barked ghost gum trunks.

We shouldered pick and shovel, dug around the pits and spied
Some rocks with glints of colour which we washed and set aside.

We put the billy on the fire and viewed the setting sun,
The quietness and the solitude our guests on Drover's Run.

We gazed beyond the campfire, nature’s beauty to embrace,
And understood why Drover thought of this a special place.

That day we’ll long remember when we tasted of the fruits
Of country hospitality where mateship has its roots.
©Vivienne Ledlie
Poem 26
Last Glimpse
The blurry face that bids hello
Says "she'll be apples mate"
With that my mind drifts back
In time ten fateful days ago
To when we hit the beach
 
Nervous laughs, eyes wide from fear
The barges near the beach
We ground and hell rages
Shells explode and things whine near
The first men scream and die

To quell the fear we rage and yell
And run hard to the dunes
Try to melt into the sand
One by one your friends are felled
Some in pain some in peace

We make the slopes and our squad tries
To push through stunted brush
All the while deadly fire
Sudden thud, breath stops, sightless eyes
Hazy, numb, feel so tired

My mind drifts backward further still
Troopship convoy leaving
The sight of Lockyer's foundling
Wet granite slopes and ancient hill
Misty, scrubby beauty

Calm and quiet but friendly place
We watch the coast recede
As we steam out westward
With wistful eyes the coast we trace
Last glimpse, tranquil, fading
John Lee (c)
T
his poem is more a Remembrance Day tribute, the last thing most Diggers saw of Australia in
1915 was the shore of a little coastal town some 400 kilometres from Perth on the south coast of WA.
It is therefore also a tribute to Albany as seen through the eyes of a dying Digger on the slopes of Gallipoli.
Poem 25
 
When You Look Back..
Words cannot explain some things;
Hidden, unspoken and unheard;
However, superfluous and poetic;
When you look back;
You see the light shines;

Remember those things meaningless;
That makes you smile in your thought;
How do you feel when you reflect;
On those little things said and done;
That makes you angry but now you smile;

Only when you look back;
You see that some little things;
Mean more than just anything;
Some times are just the best of time;
Some joy the best of joy and all;

Reflect the mirror in your eyes;
That says: Oh! special you;
Then you will know they are things;
That cannot be bought by gold and silver;
Some things you only see when you look back..
mfon etina (c)
Poem 24
The Dracups

Michael Dracup on his postie’s pay
Bought a raffle ticket at a school fete day
He was surprised when he got the advice
That he'd won a metal detecting device

So, Michael who lived up Newcastle way
Planned a family holiday
When holiday time finally came around
Michael and his family, to the west were bound

Out on the goldfields of the West
They aimed to give that detector a test
On an unclaimed patch in the searing heat
Off a track last beaten by explorers feet
The detector signaled “Beep, beep, beep, beep”
That patch was gold to five metres deep!

Michael Dracup pegged his claim
It bought to him untold wealth and fame
The Dracups moved down Sydney way
From their weatherboard to an estate in Rosebay!

Diplomats in foreign cars
Entrepreneurs and movie stars
Were heard to drop the Dracup name
A symbol of, status and fame

Tourists stopped at the Dracup gate
Cameras clicked at an unreel rate
Reporters clutching media cards
Presented themselves to the front gate guards

Guests with partners and entourages,
Included princesses, dukes, and purported rajs
All in all there was such a throng
The Dracups' street resembled downtown Hong Kong!

The Dracup clan whose numbers were few
Inside a month, exponentially grew
With aunts and uncles who claimed to be kin
Many admitting no more knowledge than the raffle win

Now, this poem having told of luck and of gold
Gives rise to the speculation
As to what one would do, with a billion or two
In the Dracups' situation!
Eddie O’Hara(c)2002
Poem 23
My thoughts have turned to Christmas
My thoughts have turned to Christmas
In this golden land called home,
Where tall gums sway and blue, blue skies,
Beckon all those who roam.

My heartfelt prayer for Christmas
Is for children to laugh and be loved,
To embrace all colours and faiths
And the tolerance that shines from above.

My thoughts have turned to Christmas
Where no wars need be fought,
Where peace on Earth, good will to men
Are the only creeds to be sought.

My thoughts have turned to Christmas
To celebrate the joys of life,
A time of giving, not receiving
And learn of the love of Christ.

Yvonne Pick of Norman Park. (c)
Poem 22
THE POETRY OF LIVES
 
I tell her, "Amma, poetry is magic
The voice of OUR souls;
Recite a few verses of the Bhagwadgita
And listen to your heart,
It is our chat under the banyan tree,
When nightfall silences the village.
It is the baby’s full-throttled cry,
Out of a mothers’ womb.
It is the first rain that falls to the cracked earth,
Breaking the long spell of summer.
It is the river that sings of,
Wars and heroes, glory and tradition."
I say to Amma, life may take your heart
But it can never steal your soul.
Speak your mind, my mother
That will be your poem.
Nicole Braganza (c)
Age - 17

 
Poem 21
 
Brave Little Willie Wagtail
 
Willie Wagtail - Oh, so brave!
A tail waving birdie
Thought to fly around the world
And wave on his journey!

Willie Wagtail - Flew and flew
A fearless little birdie
He perched on the snout of a crocodile
And waved until one thirty!

Willie Wagtail - Flew and flew
A carefree little birdie
He perched on the neck of a lioness
And waved until two thirty!

Willie Wagtail - Flew and flew
A bold little birdie
He perched on the trunk of an elephant
And waved until three thirty!

Willie Wagtail - Flew and flew
A friendly little birdie
He perched on the head of a buffalo
And waved until four thirty!

Willie Wagtail - Flew and flew
A clever little birdie
He stood next to a porcupine
And waved until five thirty!

Willie Wagtail - Flew and flew
A homesick little birdie
He perched on a Wandering Albatross
And was home by six thirty!

Willie Wagtail - In his tree
A chirpy little birdie
He felt so gala, he sang to a koala
And waved until seven thirty!

Then he went to sleep…
(c) Eddie O'Hara 2004
 
Poem 20
CAWNPORE COUNTRY

The Cawnpore Hills majestically survey
The far-flung plains where dying cattle lay,
Where wasted land reveals a poignant scene
Which begs release from ravage's routine.

Long have these hills seen cyclic weather shifts:
The dehydrated ground criss-crossed with rifts,
The withered landscape listless, mean and bare,
Where dust storms swelled brown waves of choking air.

Mirages mocked and beckoned those who dared
Traverse this desert; few whose lives were spared
Their tales to tell, with wonder and alarm,
Yet spellbound by the captivating charm.

From drought to flood recurrent patterns spanned
When rivers spread vast channels through the land -
The Bulloo, Cooper, Thompson and Baroo,
Disbursing northern monsoon residue.

Soon mitchell grass and wildflowers waved salute
To Cawnpore's weathered mesa forms, astute
To Min Min's secret of the dancing light -
That ghostly fascination of the night.

These Hills have witnessed changing transport modes:
Long teams of camels packed with swaying loads,
The heavy bullock wagons with supplies
For gold fields echoing "Eureka" cries.

When mobs of cattle passed by Cawnpore Hills
Did drovers' gritty eyes see desert spills?
Or did eroded limestone cliffs afire
With coloured beauty rouse, restore, inspire?

Today the heavy transports pass this way,
While 4-wheel drives and caravans convey
Explorers born of modern times who pause
To wonder at this landscape's magic scores.

No more the tracks through sandhills' shifting scene,
Where bold explorers trudged hostile terrene;
Though modern systems now our world sustain,
The mystique of this country shall remain.
©
Vivienne Ledlie
 
Poem 19
Miss-conception
How cute she looked I thought, as her ponytail swayed in the breeze.
I must I thought have a closer look, as I felt my heart give tease.
With gold earrings in her ears, I know that we must meet,
A Goddess there is no doubt, from her head down to her feet.

A butterfly flies close, to her beautiful hair of gold,
I watch as she reaches out, to brush away, one that is so bold.
If I were but that butterfly, and I could be so near,
To gaze upon her face and vow that my love’s in deed’s sincere.

She looks in each shop window, but then she walks on by,
If I could see but what she liked, than perhaps then I could buy,
And surprise her with my little gift, her heart I know would feel,
The tenderness that’s beats within, one kiss my love would seal.

But alas she is now leaving, as she opens her car door,
I hurry now before she goes least she is lost forever more,
I call out “please we must meet, and please don’t think it weird.”
She turned around to look, and then I see, a face all-full of beard
Mel Sommers (c).
Poem 18
Dreamtime
My home is in Australia.
On ancestral tribal ground.
My playground is the vast outback.
That encircles all around.
The sky at night it twinkles, down on me far below.
I look up in amazement.
These stars I've come to know.
I learn of Dreamtime taught by those whose ancient words convey.
A culture rich with stories, that I will teach one day.
So though our worlds seem different.
Our paths may not diverge.
In wilderness.
Or Metropolis.
Side by side on this red earth.

The Green Family (c)
 
Poem 17
The dry powdered soil
I kick up the dry powdered soil neath my feet.
Scan the sky for a sign of some hallowed relief.
Push my akubra back over my head, wipe my brow.
Drought, damn it, what the hell am I going to do now.
Turning slowly to gaze at the family home.
Realising there's no money left for the loan.
Sheep starving, decaying in the scorched arid earth.
Is this all that's become of the land of my birth.
Then a deep distant rumble, a drop slips from my cheek.
But a tear will not quench it's a downpour I seek.
As the clouds begin rolling towards my old homestead.
A change on the horizon.
Hope, thank god isn't dead.
The Green Family (c)
Poem 16
Mysterious Great Barrier Reef
Beyond the deep blue there lies a world of beauty and mystery,
A home to corrals, mammals and fish by name its the Great Barrier Reef.
Admired for its life form and history,
 its peaceful tranquillity truly sets it apart,
There's nothing more beautiful than the creatures
it holds its a place that will never leave the heart.
Sounds of waves gently crashing,
squeaks of dolphins and whale tales smashing
leave thoughts of what lays underneath,
Its the untamed barren beauty that captivates all,
 its the mystery of the Great Barrier Reef.
Written by Angela Davies(c)
 
Poem 15
 
ROBBY
I was feeling down, despondent, though I could not figure why.
Hell… perhaps it was the weather and the fact that things were dry.
It’s a soul sapping experience when blue skies will not cease,
bringing melancholy moments when one’s soul cannot find peace.

Then my mood was interrupted by an email coming through
and I glanced down at my laptop; it was from a mate I knew.
Howard was a fellow poet whom I’d met last year in May,
who would often send me stories that someone had sent his way.

As I read the text before me I soon came to realize
there were folk who faced much crueller tests and tears welled in my eyes.
“My full name is Mildred Hondorf and for thirty years or more
I have taught piano lessons to young children by the score.

“Though I’ve taught a lot of students who have shown ability,
there were sadly some among them who were challenged musically.
Of that number was young Robby and he had a single Mum
and the lad was now eleven … much too old I thought to come.

‘“But it’s always been my mother’s dream to hear me play,” he said,
and those haunting words still linger to this day within my head.
Robby had no tone or rhythm and this fact he could not hide.
He just lacked inborn ability, but still the lad he tried.

“He learnt elementary pieces and would dutifully review
all the scales I put before him, but deep down inside I knew
that the poor child showed no promise and would never learn to play
but each week his words would echo, ‘Mum will hear me play some day.’

“Robby’s mother always smiled and waved, though did so from her car
and I’d never met her personally in any way so far.
Then one day Rob never came again.  I guessed he’d just moved on.
Though I must admit I felt at ease now that the lad was gone.

“He was not a good advertisement for what I was about
and then several weeks on down the track I sent some flyers out.
For I had in mind an evening, a recital on a night
where the parents, friends and relatives could see them in full flight.

“It seems Robby too received one and he asked if he could try,
but I told him it’s impossible, he did not qualify.
You have not attended lessons, so it really wasn’t fair.
‘But my mum was sick!’ Young Rob explained, ‘she couldn’t drive me there.’

‘“I’ve been practising Miss Hondorf and Mum wants to hear me play.’
I don’t know how he persuaded me, but Robby got his way.
He’d perform before my closer, just in case his effort died
and that way I’d salvage self-esteem or bluntly … save my pride.

“Well the evening had gone splendidly and Rob was paged on next,
but the sight of his appearance … well, it truly left me vexed.
The lad’s clothes were unironed, wrinkled and his hair was quite a mess
and it looked like an eggbeater had been through it I confess.

“But he sat at his piano and announced out very loud
he would play Mozart’s Concerto in C Major for the crowd.
His small fingers danced so nimbly on the ivories that’s for sure
and I know that Mozart would have been amazed at what he saw.

“Robby ended his performance in a grand crescendo style
and the crowd just stood applauding while I had the biggest smile.
I just hugged the lad and asked him ‘How’d you do it? Don’t be shy.’
And he spoke into the microphone and gave his proud reply.

“Well my Mum has been real sick of late, she’d cancer in her chest,
and she passed away this morning Miss. I had to play my best.
Mum was born quite deaf you see, but prayed with all her might,
that one day she’d hear me playing and I know she heard tonight.”
©Bush Poet
Merv Webster
The Goondiwindi Grey
Merv is about to release his first bush ballad E.P. called The Bushman and The Balladeer. 
 Two songs he wrote as a tribute to R.M.Williams and Slim Dusty.

 
Poem 14
The Blue Ribboned Bull

A young bull escaped from a barn one night
Out to the streets where the lights were bright
He'd seen a mouse and taken fright
He'd won a blue ribbon at the show!
A blue ribbon at the show!

The sleek, black bull looked back to the barn
Afraid the mouse would do him harm
It took time to raise the alarm
Oh! Where did Mirco go?
Oh! Where did Mirco go?

His "calling card" he left on Ruby's lawn
A passing car blew its horn
Miffed, the bull charged off the lawn
But was outpaced by that foe
He was outpaced by that foe

The bull checked back - not a mouse in sight
So he stopped to admire a highway light
A "give way" sign lost its height
A rump was itching so
A rump was itching so


Then came a bellow, a buck and a rear
All the traffic stopped in fear
The bull saw the highway now was clear
He crossed with his head down low
He crossed with his head down low

Bulldozed was a garden bed
While its owner slept in bed
Rain washed away many a tread
Did the owner blame a crow?
Did the owner blame a crow?

A honda carported in one place
Was bumped aside to make more space
A motel guest saw a beastly face
On the porch looking in her window!
On the porch looking in her window!

A greenhouse was rampaged, through
Letterboxes knocked askew
All the while only motorists knew
A bull was on the go!
A bull was on the go!

Handlers found the bull that night
Up the hill from the motel site
They pampered him - They'd been worried white
"Oh! Where did Mirco go?"
"Oh! Where did Mirco go?"
Eddie O'Hara 2004 (c)
 
Poem 13
~Australian Scene~
 
Taste of honeydew
Grannysmith apples crunchy sweet..
As children run with happiness
Clover under feet..

Rainbow lorikeet in flight
As cockatoos do sing..
A little rough voiced they are
Yet happiness they bring..

Down beside the billabong
where swaggies like to go ..
Is bedroll, old blanket
and grass for soft pillow.

Overhead eagle soars
A solo flight indeed ..
Hunting prey, yes dinner
Company, he does not need.

Overhead clear blue skies
Eucalyptus on the air..
Australia so beautiful
Advance Australia Fair!
Copyright©shennibubb2004
Poem 12
A letter to Queen Mother

Queen mother! answer me
Tell me how can I get in touch with you!
I forgot to introduce myself
I'm that young of great promise
I've heard that your castle is the heaven of peace
And your garden open to outsiders
I ‘m a bottle feed child
I'm beginning to cut my teeth
I'm that orphan ,crying out in pain
Enough to wake dead
I'm that boy in the street
I've no diploma hanging on the wall
But I've an answer to everything
You mother of gloomy weather
Diamond of the first water
Tell me where are your good readers ?
I'm that bartender, I'm that thinker
And my words burnt to cinder
Queen mother answer me !
I'm in towering rage
I'm that writer ,and my papers yellowed with age
I'm that bird of good omen
Prisoner in my golden cage
And my innocence sold into slavery
I'm that busker , I'm always playing my own accompaniment
And the story of my life is quit romance
Queen mother believe me !
You can't see the wood from the trees
If you come to me , to see how the land lies
You queen mother! in that island difficult of access
Your all sweetness, pureness, and light
You woman whom I trust
You who have a power to act
I'm in hell of mess
Allow me to sing in your beautiful streets
To row round your green wood
That will do me a world of good
I'll swear queen mother !
To sink in my second childhood
And to distinguish truth from falsehood
Queen mother !
Forgiver me my trespasses
And all my wishes for your happiness

Hacene Rahmouni  Algeria  (c)


Poem 11
Give us a go mate!
Go on give us a chance.
I'm ready to work.
Too much time on my hands
I wont waste your time mate.
You won't count the cost.
I just need employment.
All my self esteems lost.
The dole queue is sapping the life out of me.
Just a few hours of work.
To give me back dignity.
So give us a go mate.
Just spare me the time.
And help me escape from the poverty line.
Though I'm one out of millions the statistics show.
Your decision today will change more than you know.
So what do you say mate.
As you do contemplate.
Is it wages or handouts.
I'm awaiting my fate.
Green Family(c)
Poem 10
Cow girl
Take me along with you !
I can't wait
With eyes shut
I'll go where you want me to
Where you are my love !
I'll be there with you
I'll be happy with you
From morning to night
In the heat of moment
On the verge of tears
In the shade of the horizon
In the depth of winter and the summer
In the worse and the better
I miss you, I'm thinking of you
take me along with you
For my college years ,much to regret
In my loneliness, for my illness and sadness
For that old flame !
With my school maam
For that innocent love
Washed away by the tide
Buffeted by the the waves
For my heart crushed by grief !
take me along with you
In the middle of war and the peace
Hight up on the air, why not in the space!
In every nook and cranny
Near you honey, be an earthly paradise

Hacene Rahmouni  Algeria (c)
Poem 9
Big Brother
Suddenly the house is coming alive
what's the matter?
The girls and boys
Flopped onto armchairs
Jumped with joy
A mother and father
Staying near one another
Glued to the telly
To watch big brother
No one is getting sick
All animated ! some say this ,the others say that,
All like that cat on hot briks
Is there any more pleasant than that!
Everyone is flocking to see the talent
That girl! the sleeping beauty!
Or that boy with a great flow of words
Walking at a brisk pace
That goud loser
In the first flush of victory
Taking the road to success
Nobody knows,
What the future has in store
Big brother is a fantastic show
Brings entire happiness in every home
For poor and rich
Always ending with flourish
Hacene Rahmouni (c) Algeria
Poem 8
Struth Mate!!
Strike me with lightning
I've got cactus in a**
No paper ta wipe it
I had ta think fast

Cause out on the prairie
Ya do what ya do...
Behind a darn tree
If there isn't a loo!

Considering I ate
The darn chilli bean..
Me guts was a grumbling
Ya know what I mean?

When I wents for a squat
I did not realise..
There was cactus beneath
A ruddy surprise!

And the bullants aint friendly
Tis flamin "true blue"...
They never let go
When they've got hold of you..

So it's punctures and thistles
And cream on me bum..
Next time I do squats
I won't be so dumb!

The aborigines are laughing
And the cockatoos too..
Blue me old cattle dog?
Well he's in fits too!
Copyright©shennibubb2004
 
Poem 7
The Old Shearin Shed.

Us shearers arrive at old Burbong station with swag and hats on heads
We enter the old bungalow and throw our swags on their bunk beds
We pull on our boots and jump in the ute and head for the nearest pub
We have a round or two and a barbeque then Davo got punched in the lug
He whacked him right back and that was that they gave us the boot out the door
Then we rolled into bed near the old shearin shed then got up at the crack o' dawn

(c) Maree Cochrane
Poem 6
 
Pride of Australia
The pride of Australia surges my veins
when I see the Outback awash after rains;
when droughts have been broken, the future is bright;
suspended life flourishes, seeking the light.

When I see the desert alive and in bloom -
bright tapestries woven on Nature's rich loom -
I'm proud to be part of this picturesque land
with high mountain ranges and white coastal sand.

The great inland rivers which flood and retreat,
the salt lakes which shimmer false hope and deceit;
stark pillars of limestone alluringly weird,
wild places the natives esteemed and revered.

I thrill as I tramp through deep gorges which hide
rare ferns in moist crevices where sunbeams glide;
where underground springs blithely bubble and squirt
their crystal clear waters in musical spurt.

The rugged escarpments and ironstone reefs -
a country cocooned in strange myths and beliefs;
the echoes of rumbling volcanoes I heed
to herald the legends which Dreamtime decreed.

The pride of Australia surges my veins
pulsating a chorus of earnest refrains:
this land 'neath the cross of the great Southern skies
to symbols of beauty and strength testifies.

© Vivienne Ledlie
Poem 5
SUNBURNT FIELDS

Drought, Drought – cursing the Australian land.
Fields that were once flourished by crops
are nothing more than a extinct field
bleached by red dirt; with hungry,
depurative minds of lean, bony livestock as
the cursing red sun in the west beams another day.

Drought, Drought – cursing the Australian land.
Flocks of staggering sheep follow the long, windy track
To the scorched, sun burnt creek, to find nothing but deep
cracked dirt holes in the ground.    Their heads buried
into metal rustic fences entombed as the daunting heat
takes it’s toll.

Drought, Drought – cursing the Australian land.
Sly, Cunning foxes murder defenseless sheep
to expose their flesh to be as pink as the sunset.
“Hist, Whist, Swish! Here comes another windstorm.”
The wind moans and whines like a sad dog.
As Malevolent, Torturous heat waves quiver and dance

Drought, Drought – cursing the Australian land.
Burning not only our countryside but all that people worked hard for.
No crops, No money.
“Please God, send down some rain.”

Emma Sherman (c)
 
Poem 4
YABBA DABBA DOO
A mass of rippling muscle, sweaty, shiny and brown
prepares an assault
on mother nature
in an effort to capture the crown.

Uneasy but ready he shakes his head
this sudden motion a tease,
for something’s about to happen
in this gentle easterly breeze.

A few nervous circles in front of the gate
as the tension is felt in the air,
ten seconds to go and the count down is on
and the assembled all prepare.

Three, two, one and all hell lets loose
the dust it starts to flay,
with perfect timing the gate is breached
and then they’re on their way.

Hands go to eyes to view the scene
with worried frowns on a few,
but this dashing colt drew admiring stares
as he traversed each jump anew.

As if together they were joined
they powered through the course
creating quite a spectacle
for those watching this great horse.

His rider, full of confidence
energy strong and sustained,
pushed toward the finish line
and guided with her reins.

As they came across that finish line
and rounded one last tree,
the beauty of her riding skills
were there for all to see.

This day was not a winning one
but another day will be;
for her four legged friend will take her
you just wait, you’ll see.
 
 
Poem 3
The Cowboy The Gypsy And The Girl
There's a cowboy driving a beat up cattle truck
The life he lives just keeps him trusting luck
Another rodeo or an outback country show
It's the kind of life a cowboy only knows
 
There's a gypsy travelling down a long and dusty road
He don't care he ain't carrying no load
Sometimes he'd like a woman by his side
No woman wants to be a gypsy bride

There's a girl sitting watching from the stand
As a bull turns and tries to stomp her man
She turns her head there's a tear on her face
As she thinks about another time another place

She recalls a lost and lonely man
And thinks about the touch of a gypsy's hand
Then wonders what's ahead in this world
For the cowboy the gypsy and the girl

Somedays there are lessons learned
There are often bridges burned
Somethings will shake up your world
Like the cowboy the gypsy and the girl

Just like the cowboy the gypsy and the girl
By Ray Malone copywrite 6/11/03
all rights reserved
 
POEM 2
THINGS ARE NOT THE SAME
 
HEAR THE STORIES OF THE RINGERS AND THE STOCKMEN OF THE PAST
AND LIVING ON THE STOCKROUTE WHEN THE LIFE WAS NOT SO FAST
OF THE DROVER ON THE BARCLAY AND CAUGHT BY AN EARLY WET
AND THE RIVER LEVEL RISING AT A SPEED TO MAKE YOU SWEAT
OR AT THE COOPER MUSTER AFTER FOUR LONG YEARS OF DROUGHT
WITH THE DRY AIR FULL OF THICK FINE DUST AND STOCK STILL TO COME OUT
THE WILD LAND OF THE KIMBERLEYS WHERE THE SCENERY IS SO FINE
BUT FEED'S SHORT AND THE MARKETS WAIT AND YOU WISH THERE WAS MORE TIME

YOU TRAVELLED THEN, SHORT DISTANCES IN LONG DAYS , ALL BY HORSE
AND WALKED A LOT BY HIS SIDE, IT’S DIFFERENT NOW OF COURSE
‘COS BACK THEN YOUR OLD HORSE AND YOU WERE OUT THERE ON YOUR OWN
NOW YOU’RE IN CONTACT WITH THE WORLD ON YOUR NEW MOBILE PHONE
IT’S LINKED TO THAT GREAT SATELLITE AND IT’S AN EVEN BET
YOU’LL SPEND NIGHTS CHATTING WITH YOUR FRIENDS ON THE INTERNET
AND INSTEAD OF THAT OLD FAITHFUL HORSE YOU’LL RIDE A MOTORBIKE
YOU’LL SIT A WHILE IN THE SHADY SPOT THEN CATCH UP WHEN YOU LIKE

YOU USED TO SHOOT A RABBIT IF OF JERKY YOU SHOULD TIRE
YOU’D SKIN AND GUT AND DRESS IT AND COOK IT ON THE FIRE
AND STRING A TARP BETWEEN TWO TREES TO KEEP YOUR BEDROLL DRY
AND ON THE CLEARER NIGHT YOU’D SLEEP BENEATH THE STAR FILLED SKY
NOW WITH THE HELP OF ELECTRIC FENCE YOU BED THE BIG HERD DOWN
THEN INTO THE STATION CHOPPER AND HEAD OFF INTO TOWN
OR IF YOU ARE THE ONE WHO’S TURN IT IS TO STAY ON SITE
IT REALLY IS A PLEASURE TO BE OUT THERE FOR THE NIGHT

IN THE AIR CONDITIONED CARAVAN WITH SATELLITE TV
FROZEN MEALS AND MICROWAVE MAKE THIS THE PLACE TO BE
THE GENERATOR RUNS SO QUITE YOU HARDLY HEAR A SOUND
YOU’VE HAD A NICE HOT SHOWER SO NOW YOU SETTLE DOWN
AND TONIGHT YOU’LL WATCH A VIDEO ABOUT HOW IT USED TO BE
THE OVERLANDER IS WHAT IT’S CALLED AND STARS CHIPS RAFFERTY
AND YOU THINK IT IS A COMEDY HOW THEY THIRST IN CHOKING DUST
WHY DON’T THEY USE THE GOVERNMENT TANKS ‘STEAD OF MAKING SUCH A FUSS

BUT THE BEASTS ALL GOT TO MARKET AND THEY ALL LOOKED IN THEIR PRIME
IF THEY’D USED THE KAWASAKI IT WOULD’VE TAKEN HALF THE TIME
BUT THE MEAT BACK THEN WAS TENDER, FOR THE STOCK WAS NEVER STRESSED
IT WAS THE MEN WHO WERE LEATHER HARD AND THE MEAT WAS NEATLY DRESSED
NOW A BLOKE NAMED R M WILLIAMS IS CALLING FOR THE COME BACK OF THE HORSE
BUT HE’S MEETING OPPOSITION FROM THE BIG COCKIES AND OF COURSE
THEY CLAIM HE’S TRYING TO STOP PROGRESS THEY SAY YOU CAN’T DO THAT
NEXT HE’LL WANT TO STOP US ADDING CHEMICALS AND FAT

BERT WILDER (C) 02/07/02

Poem  1
Drought Breaker
As the farmer knelt down on the salty sand,
He needed rain to save his land.
The crops were wilting, the cattle all dead,
He looked around, not a word was said.

The ground was dry, where is the rain?
What could stop this worthless pain?
The farmer cursed in sheer despair,
He did not have a drop to spare.

A thundercloud covers the western sky,
A bolt of lightning explodes near by.
The farmer looks up and begins to pray,
Hoping that the rain will come his way.

Then drip-by-drip it starts to fall,
The crystal water like a clear glass wall.
The trees and flowers all in bloom,
Then once again, gone is the gloom.

The water fills the old parched creek,
The rivers bulge as the waters peak.
The mud squelches through the farmer’s dry old hands,
As he thanks the Lord for saving his land.
 
By Meg Hayes (c) Year Seven
St Mary’s Primary School,
 

A Tribute to Helen
Helen's

   
    Tamworth Rage Page
Helen's Tamworth Rage Page,
A Country Music on-line site.

Australian and overseas news,
TRP is a Country Music fan's delight.

Current concerts, topical artists,
News, tributes, poetry, contests.
Anything you wish to know,
TRP is Simply the Best!

Australian as the gum trees,
Informal and down to earth.
Helen's Tamworth Rage Page
Assures Australians of their own self-worth.

Congratulations and thanks to Helen,
www.tamworthragepage.com

Yvonne Pick  - June, 2004.

Macleay River
New South Wales

Macleay, a gently winding river,
Her riverbanks serene,
Shady, sloping native gums,
Nature's vista supreme.
A snap shot of Australia
To reflect upon for hours,
Distant, dark-green covered hills,
Magnificent, small wildflowers.

Afternoon shadows soften the haze
On a blazing summer's day.
Picnickers seek her cooling shores,
While children run and play.
Ripples on the Macleay River,
Blackfish breeding ground,
Trevally and Blue Swimmer fish,
Mud crabs fresh and sound.

Historic Macleay River
Evokes many a scene long past,
Old timers recall the Punt Service,
The current running fast.
Echoes of 19th century cedar cutters
Are heard if you quietly listen,
Stuarts Point, a fisherman's paradise
Where the Bream and Whiting glisten.

Apex Historical Lookout
Affords a magical view,
Of the journeying Macleay River
To restore the soul anew.

Yvonne Pick,
Norman Park, Brisbane.
May, 2004. (c)

 
Print out and have the memories