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The Day After Poetry Day

Sand at 10I’m not really a Poet, although I occasionally turn to Poetry when I feel the need, or I might win a T-Shirt. I was advised I should put my random and rare poems in one place, so here they are. All 4 of them.

First Poems first, although I had written poems before I have no record of them.

This one I wrote in about 10 minutes on my iPad as I was tasked with saying grace once to a large table full of people and I’m not religious so I made my own grace up.

‘Thanks to those, the hale and hearty

Our companions at this gathered party

Thanks to the cooks, the creators of feasts

Thanks to those, the hunters of beasts

Thanks to those who tend the vines

and thanks to those who make them wines

The makers of food and tenders of flocks

The brewers and bakers and growers of crops

The folk who take wild things and make them a meal

The food and the wine over friendships we seal

We thank the stout people who carry the beer

We thank our good hosts for having us here

We give thanks that we are lucky as life could be worse

But not for too long as here comes the first course.


The second poem was written as a tribute to my late Father who spent much of his working life as a high country fencer and nobody had written a poem about fencers. Dad was a fan of Banjo Patterson. Sadly Dad never heard this poem, I think he would have liked it.

The Fencers.

‘They worked up on boundary lines, in mud and rock and shale.

It’s rough up there, the wind is cold, it blows a bloody gale.

The fencing gear, the wire and posts, all carted in by hand.

The men were hardy, tough and strong, fencing off the land.

They cut all through the rough terrain, in Tea-tree scrub and gorse.

They kept on going, dawn till dusk, sticking to the course.

They camped out on the boundary line with billy, smokes and gun.

It sounds alright, a way of life but it’s no bloody fun.

With a bit of luck a chopper came to lay the fencing gear.

If the weather’s in the laying out could take a bloody year.

The climb was harsh the landscape rough, the boundary unforgiving.

The fencers though, ‘til the job is done would never bloody give in.

We sing about the pioneers, the men who cleared the land

The foresters, the farmers, blokes who built a life by hand

No-one recalls the fencers though, who worked the boundary lines.

The hardy men out on the hills when it rains and when it shines

They never had the luxury of the big homestead or fire.

They divided up our nation’s farms with battens, posts and wire…’


Third Poem was written for no good reason other than I don’t like Wellington very much.


A bloke goes off to Wellington, to watch a game of sport,

In the park all by himself, alone to hold the fort.

Watching rugby in the capital’s a lonely thing to do

They’re funny folk in Wellington, not at all like me or you


They like to sit in trendy bars and drink a trendy beer

Or chatter in a coffee shop and bend each other’s ear


The game is on, the sport is great but they don’t give a stuff

The gentle souls of Wellington don’t like when things get rough


They want to talk philosophy or drink some herbal tea

Not see a bloody rugby game out there with you and me


They work as civil servants, or in offices and schools

Insurance men, ‘head office’ staff, investment banker tools


They call it windy Wellington, it’s scenic and it’s small

Most kiwis if they’re honest though don’t like it much at all


Not just because they hate the game and spend their time inside

You would as well if your weather made you feel so woe betide


No, nor because it’s full of students, lefties or musicians

The problem is with Wellington, it’s full of politicians.

Finally, I was listening to the Radio yesterday, Radio New Zealand, National Radio and on the Jessie Mulligan show they were discussing National Poetry Day. A challenge was laid down to write a 6 line ‘flash poem’ which is a poem written in a hurry, incorporating 6 words supplied by the Radio Station. The words were wave, travel, spill, grain, cow and leader.

I wrote the following as it was topical given the leadership events in ‘Straya’ that day.

I won the competition and a T-shirt. Yay for me!

I’m your leader, I won’t be cowed
That Dutton Bloke ain’t smart, just loud
This wave of dissent, this toxic spill
This grain of salt, this bitter pill
You think I’ll walk? Just go and travel?
No mate, I’ll watch your Aussie mess unravel.
That is the current extent of my recorded poetry. Thank you for your attention.

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