THE Poverty Tin

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Terry
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Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2010 6:53 pm

THE Poverty Tin

Post by Terry » Tue Jun 03, 2014 3:36 pm

THE POVERTY TIN

It was around about 1980, if memory serves me right and we were working the old Coronation lease way out at Mount Celia. Stories of its past riches had been drawing hopeful blokes like us to this mine over many years, whispers of the fabulous finds made here in the early days were the reason for our visit then.
We were one of the earliest groups to try our luck with detectors and found some really good gold there; both quartz specimens and nuggets, most specimens were heavy with gold. (this was back in the good old days)
I remember it had been a stinking hot day and we had been bashing bits of gold out of the calcrete (nature’s version of extremely hard concrete) when I got a good deep signal in an area away from the calcrete and was convinced it was gold, but was soon cursing my luck when I dug up an old Vesta wax match tin. I was about to toss it away in discust when I noticed it had something rattling in it.
It was time for smoko so I took it over to our camp beneath a very large Kurrajong Tree (one of the biggest I’ve ever seen), an interesting thing about this tree is that bushmen will tell you that you can tell your direction by the bark on the tree. One side of the trunk is usually very smooth while the other is quite rough – bark facing west is rough south is smooth).

The tin was very rusty but still quite solid and after a bit gentle persuasion I managed to get it open without too much damage and peered at the contents; it was like looking back into history. There were about 6 or 7 small nuggets (about a gram each), a little bit of dolly gold and a few coins of low denomination. I realized by then I’d found an old poverty tin that had once belonged to a prospector who’d been doing it tough a long time before.
I mused about his fate; why had he left the tin behind; had he’ struck it rich, moved on and forgot it, or died before he could retrieve it?

That tin seemed to almost cast a spell; I imagined I could sense its vibes and when I got home I hid it away somewhere; not quite sure where now but must have another look for it. The trouble is I’ve collected so much memorabilia (or junk) the place it almost buried under it.

******
© T.E. Piggott

Heather

Re: THE Poverty Tin

Post by Heather » Tue Jun 03, 2014 4:06 pm

I enjoyed your tale Terry, you had me in from the start and now I'm wondering about the story behind that little tin. I also liked the way you diverged to tell about the tree. Sounds like you've got a museum hidden in your house. Maybe, while you've got your dicky knee you can go looking for it.

Heather :)

Terry
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Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2010 6:53 pm

Re: THE Poverty Tin

Post by Terry » Wed Jun 04, 2014 6:31 pm

Hi Heather,
A bit more about that Poverty tin it also had a small medal in it, I think it might have been a St. Christopher medal; not sure now what he was the patron Saint of.

The Kurrajong tree is a really beautiful tree and looks so out of place among the usual drabness of trees you find in the arid parts of Australia. Most trees out there have a sort of smoky green-blue look about them, while the Kurrajong has wonderful bright green foliage and usually are solitary in nature. They have a nice straight trunk and the first branches often start about 6 to 8 foot up the trunk, they then form a quite dense canopy and the larger ones offer good shade during the middle hours of the day. It's unusual to find one as big as the one mentioned here although there was an even larger one a couple of klms. away.

Cheers, glad you enjoyed the yarn, I'm doing precious little in the way of poetry at the moment so had a go at this instead.

Terry

Heather

Re: THE Poverty Tin

Post by Heather » Wed Jun 04, 2014 7:40 pm

I think St. Christopher had something to do with safe travel. But I got a feeling they gave him the flick for some reason - :)

Ron
Posts: 414
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2010 5:55 pm
Location: Blue Mtns.

Re: THE Poverty Tin

Post by Ron » Wed Jun 04, 2014 8:40 pm

If only that old tin could talk Terry!
The old adage that 'every adversity holds the seed of a greater benefit' could be applied here (re. your knees). It is giving you a chance to record those old and interesting memories, to be appreciated by many, now and in years to come.
Cheers
Ron

Terry
Posts: 2766
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2010 6:53 pm

Re: THE Poverty Tin

Post by Terry » Wed Jun 04, 2014 8:57 pm

Hi Heather,
I wondered if he had found the Medal, as I think from memory people usually wore them around their necks?

I once found a chain with a couple of similar medals on it, it look like the chain had broken.

You would be amazed at some of the things I found over the years.

Terry

Terry
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Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2010 6:53 pm

Re: THE Poverty Tin

Post by Terry » Wed Jun 04, 2014 9:01 pm

G/day Ron,

I sometimes wonder If I should have written a few more of these type of stories instead of messing around with poetry; they were special times, for me at least.

Terry

Neville Briggs
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Location: Here

Re: THE Poverty Tin

Post by Neville Briggs » Wed Jun 04, 2014 9:14 pm

Great story Terry. Now when you pass on ( not for a long time yet we hope ;) ) someone is going to find some amazing things among your stuff, by the sound of it. :lol:
Neville
Singleton Bush Poets.

Terry
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Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2010 6:53 pm

Re: THE Poverty Tin

Post by Terry » Thu Jun 05, 2014 10:50 am

Hi Neville,
Probably a case of one man's treasure is another mans rubbish.

My wife will be interested in some of it of course, but I suspect most will end up in the rubbish tip, which is fair enough.

I've always been a bit of a bower bird and have picked up a lot of things that were interesting to me because I know the story behind them. I have containers allover the place filled with odds and ends (mostly junk I suspect).

Cheers Terry

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Maureen K Clifford
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Location: Ipswich - Paul Pisasale country and home of the Ipswich Poetry Feast
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Re: THE Poverty Tin

Post by Maureen K Clifford » Thu Jun 05, 2014 11:41 am

Why not tell the story and then add the poem to complement it topped up with one of your great photos - that would be a book and a half Terry and it would be of interest to many. It's a great little story and a bit of a mystery as well. Are you going to follow through and see if you can discover more about it?

I know the TAT Outback Magazine would be delighted to share your yarns as well if you wanted to share them as would I - http://www.theaustraliatimes.com/emagaz ... /issue101/
Check out The Scribbly Bark Poets blog site here -
http://scribblybarkpoetry.blogspot.com.au/


I may not always succeed in making a difference, but I will go to my grave knowing I at least tried.

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