Forest Summer Idyll by C.J. Dennis

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"Wet day tomorrow!" says the old grey jay;
And all the bush is sweltering beneath the burning day.
      Then comes the contradiction in a sweet melodious rush.
      "Fine hot weather now!" declares grey thrush.
Tall trees are tossing as the north wind blows
"Bush fire! Bush fire!" it is sobbing as it goes.

But the boys are in the forest and the 'plane hums overhead,
And Science bids us exorcise an old-time dread.
      The 'plane is high above us; it is watching for the smoke,
      It brings a sudden comfort now to all bush folk.
But the lees of dread stay with them, the terror never dies:
"Bush fire! Bush fire!" the north wind sighs.

Old Pete, the pensioner, he cocks a bleary eye
Up to the vast blue zenith. As he slowly scans the sky,
      "Sun spots, they're sayin' now, makes weather change that way.
      Pig-swill an' poppcock!" says old Pete Parraday.
"I never hear the like of it, not since me day begun --
Floods an' fires a-comin' out of pimples on the sun!"

"Wet day tomorrow!" shrieks the old grey jay.
"Suns spots? Fiddlesticks!" scoffs Peter Parraday.
      Then sweet above the garden in the noon-day hush:
      "Fine hot weather now," insists grey thrush.
But the boys are in the forest and the high 'plane drones.
"Bush fire! Bush fire!" the north wind moans.

First published in The Herald, 22 January 1936

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on January 22, 2013 8:59 AM.

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