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1. The Local Elders Man
2. The Old Black Stove
3. Hell Plains
4. Simmo’s Last Laugh
5. The Appendage
6. The Burial of Sooty
7. The Jolly Good Sports
8. Fickle Fancy
9. Oh, it’s Christmas Eve in the Farmhouse
10. The Good Life

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THE LOCAL ELDERSMAN

When you’re living in the country in the land of bush and scrub
And you’re twenty “k’s” from neighbours another fifty from a pub
When you haven’t seen a soul for days, let alone a postman’s van,
Well never fear, a visit’s near, from your local Elders Man.
He’s a cheerful friendly fellow with a twinkle in his eye.
He brings the daily papers and spare parts when he drops by.
He’s your link with civilisation in your isolated spot,
And when it comes to sights he’s seen, he hasn’t missed a lot!

When you’re living miles from anyone you may think you’re not observed.
And a false sense of security makes you think you can’t be heard.
Your city sister daily may have visitors pop in,
And so, by eight, she’s looking great, the house like a new pin.
For you, by eight, the kids are off, cow’s milked, you’ve fed the chooks,
You’ve been so bloody busy you haven’t cared about your looks.
With hairy legs and daggy shorts and that funny little hat,
Odd socks adorn your Rossis- who the hell would fancy that?

But does it really matter? - As there’s no-one there to see,
Or so you thought ‘til the Elders Man calls unexpectedly.
If he thinks, “By God, she’s ugly- if I only had a gun!”
He never shows it on his face- acting lesson number one.
He never mentions unswept floors, or comments on the sink
That heaves and groans with breakfast plates that teeter on the brink.
He understands that farmers’ wives are busy all the time,
And that when he sees you next in town, you’ll be dressed up looking fine

Last summer, hot as hell, North wind blowing fit to bust,
The chook bin stank, the house pump seized- I had to brave the dust.
I stuffed the baby in the pram, and dragged the toddler out,
The pram wheels jammed, the scraps tipped up, I began to yell and shout.
I arrived exhausted at the shed to find the chooks were dead.
“This God forsaken Hell Hole! Wish I Lived In Town Instead!”
The wind roared loud, I cursed and swore, and fell and beat the ground -
I failed to hear the Elders Man had arrived without a sound.

He bent down sympathetically, and offered me a hand.
I thanked him, extricating from my mouth large gobs of sand.
He said to me, “Well, isn’t this a bugger of a day?!”
As if it was quite normal finding women in this way.
He put the children in his car, the toddler on his knee,
And probably thought, “She ought to be in an infirmary!”
But nothing more was ever said, though there was worse to come.
“WORSE?”- You say - much worse, I fear. Just listen to this one.

Two weeks later, I decided it was time to mow the lawn.
The husband and the workman had gone off at crack of dawn.
I was alone and mowing hard, and working up a sweat,
So I stripped off to my underwear to cool me down a bit.
The engine throbbed, the sun shone hard- I thought- “Oh, what the hell,
I don’t want strap marks on my back!”- Off came my bra as well.
Singing loud, whilst working on my great all over tan,
I mowed around the corner - BANG! - Into the Elders Man!!

I wish I had been calm and cool, and smiled and said “G’day!”
Instead I screamed, blushed, clutched myself, and swiftly ran away.
With T-shirt and my shorts back on I met him at the door.
“I turned the mower off, love,” was all he said - no more.
So when you’re living in the bush just remember this advice,
Expect the unexpected, or you’ll end up losing face.
Prevent yourself from fits of passion and those weird quirks if you can,
Or you’ll get caught for certain by your local Elders Man!

© Victoria Brown Hill Plains, Esperance

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THE JOLLY GOOD SPORTS

We’re the parents of the children who to Pony Club are true
And we stand by the objectives and the aims set, through and through.
We’re not in it for the trophies or the glory of the win
If we miss out on a ribbon, we can take it on the chin
We’re for participation and enjoyment of our sport
And we don’t encourage members who’re competitively fraught.
We’ve learnt to call “Well Done!” and “Jolly Good!” when we come last,
To shout “Hooray!” to those that win as they go flying past.

So imagine the excited buzz, when just last Sunday week
We took our children and their mounts to a club gymkhana treat.
I had my little William on his Thelwell pony, Tom,
And the other Mums and Dads had brought their tiny tots along.
There was Sheila with her daughter Kate, a sweety-pie aged five,
And sporty Sal had brought her John upon his pony Clive
Kylie had her Georgia on a darling little horse,
As we gathered for a lead rein race - a bunch of real good sports.

“I’m nervous, Mum,” a small voice cried as we lined up at the start
“It’s just for fun,” came the reply. “What’s important’s taking part.”
So why then did this mother pop some joggers on her feet
And cast her heavy boots aside as she got ready to compete?
“On your marks” the starter cried, “Ready! Steady!......Go!”
And we took off like jack rabbits with our little ones in tow.
“Hang on!” I screamed with gusto, to a rather startled Will
For like Banjo’s Geebung Polo Club, I was in there for the kill.

As I dragged the pony down the track I caught Kylie in my eye
Running like a madman with her daughter in full cry
“Run faster, Mum………run faster! Or we won’t win the race!”
She was hell bent on the trophy; you could see it on her face.
Kate was screaming “Slow down, Mum.” Her eyes were full of fear
As she clung on to her saddle, but her plea fell on deaf ears.
John and Sal were in the lead, the joggers did the trick
They reached the water bucket first; Sal yanked John off real quick

You had to get an apple then, from a bucket full of water
And Kylie didn’t hang around, she tore her little daughter
Clean off her nag and shouted out “Quick, bite that apple, love”
Then with one clean, swift, and expert move, she gave her head a shove
And immersed her conk completely ‘til she forced the apple down
And spiked it with her pearly whites, and jolly nearly drowned.
I tried the same technique with Will, although his face turned blue
And he swallowed so much water that he looked as if he’d spew.

Bubbles rose up from the depths of young Kate’s water pail
While her mother hollered “Bite it Kate!” But all to no avail.
And John didn’t take his helmet off, so no matter how he tried
He couldn’t spear his apple – his head wouldn’t fit inside.
You should have seen his mother as she ripped it off his scone
And realised that any chance of winning this was gone.
Will looked like a suckling pig, with wide and bulging eyes
As neck and neck with Kylie, we raced to claim first prize

As we tore towards the finish flags, I gave one final burst
And pulled the pony round real fast to see who had come first
‘Twas Kylie! Damn! I turned to see why Will had made no sound
And there he was flat on his back, face up, upon the ground.
I’d spun the pony round so fast when finishing the race
That Will had been ejected as he’d gained his second place
I picked him up, removed the apple, and said “Well that was fun!”
Just jump back on your pony, and we’ll do another, son!”

He didn’t seem excited at the prospect of another
Lead rein race accompanied by a half demented mother
And neither did the other two who’d clearly had enough
Of all the frenzied action of this character building stuff
And as Georgia clutched her trophy and smiled a toothless grin
We remembered that it doesn’t matter if you lose or win
We’re for participation and enjoyment of our sport
And we don’t encourage members who’re competitively fraught!

© Victoria Brown Hill Plains, Esperance

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THE APPENDAGE

Now you may have heard me talk about the Local Elders Man
And how he frequently drops by to see us when he can.
Well last week he was here again, and whilst sipping on his tea,
He spied defrosting on the bench a chicken, left by me.
With a throaty little chuckle and a cheeky little wink
He said he’d been reminded by what he’d seen on the sink
Of a story that he swore to me had happened and was true
And it made me laugh until I cried, so I’ll share it now with you.

It appears there was a lady from a smart town Bridge Club four
Who arrived one evening with the blackest eye one ever saw.
Well certainly not in circles prim and proper such as these,
So no one dared to ask her how she’d got it, if you please.
Though the ladies eyed it constantly and longed to know the score,
No one dared to ask the victim if she’d walked into a door,
Until someone’s curiosity pushed their manners to one side,
And the story that evolved caused eyes and mouths to open wide.

Her husband coming home from work on Friday evening last
Had chanced upon a college friend from student days long passed,
Who’d informed him that a few old friends were meeting at the pub
Then going off for dinner and a few drinks at the club.
“Why don’t you join us Patrick, for a night out with the crew
And we’ll laugh and reminisce about the things we used to do.”
So Patrick rang his wife and said “Don’t wait up for me dear,
I may be late, I’ll put the cat out and won’t wake you, have no fear.”

Well we all know one drink leads to two and then to several more
And when Patrick got back home the time was nearly half past four!
He was well and truly pickled; he could barely stand or walk
He couldn’t find the cat, he couldn’t see, he couldn’t talk.
He blindly crashed about downstairs but dared not join his wife
For fear of waking her and in his boozed state causing strife.
So he lunged towards the sofa where he passed out like a light
Flat on his back, and snoring, - not a very pretty sight!

Now the couple had a son at home, an amusing boy named Brad
And it happened on that night he got back in just after Dad
When he saw his father lying there all defenseless, right out cold
He thought he’d play a joke on him, for the beer had made him bold.
So, when snacking from the fridge he spied a chicken neck in there
He thought he could make use of it to give his Dad a scare
And carefully unzipping his poor sleeping father’s fly
He tastefully arranged the morsel on his victim’s thigh.

Brad went to bed…..was still asleep…..when his mother woke to find
That her husband was not lying quietly sleeping by her side
The sheets remained unruffled – no head on the pillow slept
And Pat’s wife was anxious as to why he hadn’t come home yet
Jumping from the bed she ran, threw wide the bedroom door
Then tumbled down the staircase, calling, crossed the kitchen floor
Rushed breathless to the family room and there upon the couch
Lay Patrick, prostrate, fully clothed with his manhood hanging out!

The poor woman was quite gob smacked, the vision took her breath away
She thought her husband must be dead, so still and grey he lay
Her knees began to buckle and her head felt flushed and light
For Pat’s member looked horrendous – but what added to her plight
And was the reason that she fainted, crashing to the floor –
(Causing her to catch her eye upon the table by the door)
Was that crouched upon the crumpled crutch of the stupid drunken fool
The cat sat chewing hungrily on Patrick’s precious tool!

© Victoria Brown Hill Plains, Esperance

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