With particular apologies to Andrew Barton ‘Banjo’ Paterson
I HAD written him a letter which I had, for want of better
Knowledge, sent to where I met him on the Murray, years ago,
He was boating when I knew him, so I sent the letter to him,
Just on spec, addressed as follows, “Flannery, of The Overflow”.
And an SMS came directed from a source quite unexpected,
(And I think it was dictated from a river bank or bar)
’Twas the Prime Minister who wrote it, and verbatim I will quote it:
“Flannery’s gone all catastrophic, and I don’t know where we are.”
With Australia Day flattery, visions come to me of Flannery
Gone a-driving “down to Canberra” where the politicians go;
With the journalists and stringers, Flannery pointing with his fingers,
Draws a future of disasters none of us will live to know.
And the Greens come out to meet him, and their kindly voices greet him
While the politicians ponder an election to be won,
And he sees the vision horrid of our country turning florid,
With a baking sun, a rising sea and little being done.
With opinion polls a worry, I wonder what’s the hurry
For a government that has reached the tipping point
Of potential suicide with a carbon bill that’s mired
In spin and righteous claims that can but disappoint.
It seems to me Prime Minister that this is a little sinister
In the push to place our country in the global melting pot.
Will we really lead the world or will we all be hurled
Into a distant future where we just destroy our lot?
Clancy of The Overflow was written by A B ‘Banjo’ Paterson and published in The Bulletin, an Australian news magazine, on 21 December 1889.