Thursday, June 20, 2019

Poetry Spot: Phillip Adams

Phillip Adams (1939 - ) is an Australian humanist, social commentator, broadcaster, public intellectual and farmer. He hosts Late Night Live, an Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) program on Radio National four nights a week. He also writes a weekly column for The Weekend Australian. 

the following poem by Phillip Adams will be inexplicable to a lot of overseas readers becuase of its many local references but understandable to those living in Oz. (Enjoy, Noel).

I love this bloody country: a heartfelt poem

- Phillip Adams (2014)

I love this bloody country
this land of booze and honey
of Opera House and Harbour Bridge
of shearing shed ’n’ dunny
I love this bloody country
where the sea is full of sharks
where there’s redbacks on the toilet seat
where your car gets booked by narks
I love our bloody country
this island Gert by sea
of rabbit, snake and cane toad
and the eucalyptic tree
Where your pollies are all ratbags
either that or on the take
where it’s hard to tell the difference
between reality and Rake
Where your team gets trounced each Saturday
and your pub runs out of beer
where you’re bank-robbed by the CBA
and nagged by Germaine Greer
I love this bloody country
of drought and flood and fire
with asylum seekers welcomed
with lots of razor wire
Where bigotry is Brandis’d,
and tolerance? A mockery,
thanks to ranting, raving racists
in the ranks of our shock-jockery
I love this bloody country
this land we call Australia
which has an awful anthem
coz Australia rhymes with failure
Australian stories end in woe
Or in acute embarrassment
like Gallipoli and Burke & Wills
and Rolf’s revolting harassment
(Another woeful ending’s
in our national song
when a suicidal swaggie
drowns in a billabong.)
I love this bloody country
where nothing could be finer
than to have the place exported
by some rapacious miner
Our commonwealth of minerals
by legislative stealth
goes to Clives and Ginas
to create uncommon wealth
And while Gina counts her billions
we must count the cost
in budget cuts to everything
because of taxes lost
Once Australian megawealth
was the gift of the merino
now it comes from human sheep
fleeced in James’ casino
Why salute the Union Jack
on our patriotic rag?
a Dickies towel or galvo sheet
would make a prouder flag
(The Queen’s a nice old lady
but it’s really time to ditch her
– better that our head of state
was someone like Lowitja.)
I love this bloody country
where all our famous brands
from Vegemite to Qantas
are flogged to foreign lands
And where our trad Australian slang
(drongo, dinky-di ’n’ dingo)
is forgotten in the rush
to Coca-culture lingo
I love this bloody country
it really could be worse
when this ancient columnist
goes from bad to verse

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