Works in the Herald 1922
And sundry others
Who do not regard us
(But e'en your smug contempt will not retard us),
You who have just knocked off the weary work --
Not that you would shirk --
But the irk,
The constant trouble
Seeming, somehow, daily to grow double,
Seem all combined
To remind
That all the fuss
Connected with modern life is just a matter of wasted endeavor.
Be not downhearted,
For you never
Know when some sort of a local row will be started.
Some mild excursion
Into the realms of romance for your diversion.
Meanwhile, what of the world today?
Things seem to be going this way
In Ireland --
That dire land --
(How aptly named, by the way.
For they say
If the "ire" were extracted, the land might still be gay),
Be that as it may.
This person, de Valera,
Appears to regard himself as the Machiavelli of his era,
Though --
But let that go.
Still, the doings of Craig appear at this end of the world inconsequent and vague;
While this wild Collins chap
Seems to think there is no place but Ireland on the map.
Even here the warring factions march forth in weird regalia.
But, brothers mine, let us not forget that there is such a place as Australia.
Let us regard it,
Our country, so that our interest in other lands, overwhelming us, may not regard it.
Here, indeed, the shearers
Are striving, each one of them, to be little de Valeras;
The politicians
Are subtly finessing, as is their wont, for positions;
The suicides, murders, divorces and abductions
Are causing mild and momentary ructions.
But, apart from that,
Brothers, where -- are -- we -- AT?
Why not more interest in our national affairs?
Is there none who cares
For our Australia and the vast problems that face it?
Let us hope so, brothers; and let not our apathy disgrace it.
For lo, the time is at hand
When this Our Land
Will need her earnest champions even as ne'er before --
Soldiers of peace, sworn to service, even as soldiers of war.

"C.J. Dennis"
Herald, 7 June 1922, p6

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2003-06