Works in the Herald 1936
Said old Pete Parraday "This world we're livin' in 
Seems headin', in these modrun days, straight for the pit o' sin. 
Not anyways, it don't seem like the world I uster know 
Maybe thirty, maybe forty, fifty years ago.
Not that our world was perfeck then - not be a darn long sight: 
We was weak, an' we was human; but we all knowed wrong from right. 

"Wars we had, an' wickedness, an' sinfulness, an' strife: 
But we most was decent people aimin' at a decent life. 
Yet, when I takes me paper now an' reads it in the shade, 
An' gets a slant on all the world it makes me fair afraid. 
I asks meself, has men gone mad? Or don't they care no more 
For the kind things an' the calm ways an' quiet lives of yore? 

"But now, in this new, mad world, 'twould seem like gore an' gold 
Has blinded folk to simple joys wot made content of old 
For crime an' strife an' greed run wild in nearly every land, 
An' poor old-fashioned fools like me don't easy understand 
Wot nations do be seekin' or man so sorely needs: 
Lest all the earth's gone crazy in judgment for ill-deeds. 

"But then agen I asks meself when such fears turns me cold: 
Is it the world that's changed so much, or am I gettin' old? 
Yet, if I'm torkin' thro' me hat, there's one thing I do know   
For all I am a dodderer whose mind's in long-ago: 
We got a decent country here: an' that is why I pray. 
Gawd keep her decent tro' it all," said old Pete Parraday.

Herald, 13 January 1936, p6
The Queenslander, 20 February 1936, p3

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2011