Works in the Herald 1933

It has been reported from Mildura district that thousands of kangaroos and emus are destroying thousands of acres of valuable crops and grazing lands.

The Lion and the Unicorn
   Of England's Coat-of-Arms
Seldom make bold, so we are told,
   To ravage English farms.
In fact, 'tis said by travellers
   Who lately have been there,
That lions hardly ever roam
About the dales and dells at Home,
   And unicorns are rare.
But in this topsy-turvy land
   Where often -- inter alia --
Strange forms of bird, in ways absurd,
    Are grafted to mammalia.
And beasts have bills to fit the goose,
Our crazy Coat-of-Arms breaks loose
To roam at night and play the deuce
   'Mid farmers in Australia.
The Lion and the Unicorn
   Stay put and emplematic;
But kangaroos bluntly refuse
   To function, staid and static.
And emus stray to ruin farms,
Raising excursions and alarms;
Which proves such things, on Coats-of-Arms
   Are plainly too erratic.
Far better chain them to the shield
   Like unicorns in Britain.
Else, by what chance may we "advance"
   As in the motto written?
If not, and they get out of hand,
Before the nations we must stand
Ever a topsy-turvy land
   By its own emblem smitten.

Herald, 6 January 1933, p6

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2005