Vale, Graham Fredriksen

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Vale, Graham Fredriksen

Post by manfredvijars » Tue Nov 09, 2010 8:35 pm

It is with a heavy heart I share the news that Graham Fredriksen was involved in a tragic hunting accident on his property at Monsildale (Kilcoy) Qld. His body was found this afternoon by his son and brother-in-law.

william williams

Re: Vale, Graham Fredriksen

Post by william williams » Tue Nov 09, 2010 8:42 pm

flammin hell mate. I or we, that is all of us. Are sorry to hear this bad news. For all those that knew him we wish our deepest sorrow to all his friend and family.



Frank Daniel

Re: Vale, Graham Fredriksen

Post by Frank Daniel » Tue Nov 09, 2010 9:57 pm

My deepest concolences to his family. Another great poet lost.
I well remember when Graham and a number of us recorded the 2000 Poet of the Year album at Sony records in Sydney for Asthma NSW and the Australian Women's Weekly.
Rest in peace old mate.

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Re: Vale, Graham Fredriksen

Post by Neville Briggs » Wed Nov 10, 2010 2:08 pm

That's a shock Manfred. Unfortunately I didn't know him . but condolences to all his friends and family.

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Glenny Palmer
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Re: Vale, Graham Fredriksen

Post by Glenny Palmer » Wed Nov 10, 2010 7:32 pm

What absolutely tragic news. One of Australia's greatest wordsmiths, & a true gentlemen, lost far too soon. I will never forget his humble ways or his real passion for poetry. I will miss you Freddo, sooo much.
Sincere & deeply felt condolences to his loved ones.
The purpose of my life is to serve as a warning to others.


Re: Vale, Graham Fredriksen

Post by manfredvijars » Wed Nov 10, 2010 9:09 pm

Indeed Glenny, I concure. Graham's 'never ending book was titled "The Halls of Learning" later changed to "Three Bronze Swagmen" over seven hundred pages of impeccable verse.

So others can understand the extent of Australia's loss, I respectfully submit one of his later pieces ....

(c) 2010 Graham Fredriksen

The stockman rode in to the heart of the range,
and the moods of the bushland were silent and strange.
He was searching for something; ’twas cattle, they say,
but something else lured him onwards that day:
the call of “beyond”, and he went without will
where the mountains before him rose, ominous, still.

No bridle track led; and the shadows hung deep
in the scrubs to the side where a gorge dropped off steep.
Not a songbird sang out from the tall eucalypt,
and the silence was loud——till a lone whipbird whipped!
Its echo reverbed like a clarion’s shrill——
a cold sun thro’ the spotted gums beckoned him still.

He stopped him for dinner camp, kindled a fire,
and pondered the gorge where it wound from on higher.
Then downing his damper and draining his quart,
he turned to his horse and he offered a thought:
“We’ll go a bit further, cross over that rill——
there might be just something we’ll stumble on still.”

There was nothing to mind, there was nothing made sense;
he was miles to the back of the boundary fence.
He was following somewhere that seemed without end,
where seraphim play in a lost world unkenned.
’Twas the solstice of winter, ’twas pallid and chill,
as he rounded the spur and all Time . . . stood still.

Turn the clock back five years: hear the jackasses laugh,
and the innocent bush keeps no quiet epitaph.
The hills are in song and the birds are in flight,
with the sun thro’ the spotted gums shining so bright.
And, then, high over top of the timberlined hill,
the clouds from the northwards come, eerie, unstill.

The clouds on the highwinds a-drifting on forth;
oh, but ever more dark come the clouds from the north,
for the tempests of War on a faraway land
are casting their shadows, the continent spanned.
And down where calm waters of Magpie Creek spill
thro’ the mountains, a storm cloud would shatter the still.

A plane from the battle zones flying to south,
with men who had stared down the cold cannon’s mouth;
but one last conflagration was looming ahead,
o’er the gap in the wild Magpie Creek watershed.
Oh! a fusillade roared like the cannons of ill
from sheet lightning and thunder that sundered the still.

It is mad when the rifles and howitzers damn
everything in their sights with their wild oriflamme;
but grim parapet clouds lit like pressed battlements
can deliver as deathly in dire consequence.
The Dakota defiant, one brave pilot’s skill,
and they stood to the struggle but lost to it still.

A volley of lightning, a hurricane breeze;
a war paint of silver a-shredding the trees.
A “mayday” sent out that was never received;
a predicament bravery never retrieved.
A shudder, a shatter, a sliver, until
the Dakota was down——she is waiting there still.

As quiet as a grave for five long years, the deep
of the mountains of Magpie their secrets they keep.
And the Magpie Creek sobs and its underbrush shrouds
fourteen men who fell out from the battlement clouds.
Not a bird sings a song from the tall sclerophyll——
they grieve for another bird lying so still.

The stockman rode in to the heart of a tomb
with its epitaph sky on a pale winter gloom.
Fourteen souls and a warbird, so silent and strange——
and the secret was out from the soul of the range.
There was nothing to mind, just a quest to fulfil——
and the seraphs of Magpie watch over them still.

November 21st, 1943, an American C-47 Dakota aircraft bound for Brisbane from
the war in New Guinea crashed in a remote part of Magpie Station, east of Monto.
The wreckage was discovered on June 22nd, 1948 by a stockman mustering cattle.

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Maureen K Clifford
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Re: Vale, Graham Fredriksen

Post by Maureen K Clifford » Wed Nov 10, 2010 11:25 pm

I never knew Graham but anyone who can write verse like that is a sad loss to our country. Condolences to Grahams family.

Thank you Manfred for sharing that lovely poem with the rest of us.


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Re: Vale, Graham Fredriksen

Post by Heather » Thu Nov 11, 2010 8:19 am

What a terrible loss. Condolences to Graham's family and friends.


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Re: Vale, Graham Fredriksen

Post by Suzanne » Thu Nov 11, 2010 4:55 pm

Grahams spot at the markets was empty last Sunday. He will be sadly missed and fondly remembered.
Rest in Peace mate.


Trisha Patterson

Re: Vale, Graham Fredriksen

Post by Trisha Patterson » Fri Nov 12, 2010 2:02 pm

Brilliantly written verse!
What a loss to our poetic fraternity!

Trisha Patterson

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