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Maureen K Clifford
Posts: 7632
Joined: Tue Nov 09, 2010 10:31 am
Location: Ipswich - Paul Pisasale country and home of the Ipswich Poetry Feast


Post by Maureen K Clifford » Wed Aug 01, 2018 2:56 pm

One I wrote when we were having to do just this :(

HARD TIMES ... Maureen Clifford © The ScribblyBark Poet 2007

As he gazes ‘cross the paddocks with his rifle in his hand
and the stench of blood around him from his fresh killed starving lambs
the heat is unrelenting and the skies are blue and clear,
he is standing on his harsh dry land that’s cost his family dear.

He remembers when these paddocks were a sea of waving grass
when the windmill pumped the water to the stock in times long past.
He remembered when sheep gathered in the gum trees mottled shade,
and remembers years, long gone now, when wool clips really paid.

Now he’s faced with mounting feed bills and he rises every dawn,
wondering can he face another thankless day of putting down
mud mired sheep, that bleat and call and can’t rise from the ground.
Couldn’t stand for too long anyway. The crows have been around.

And he sees his children sadly growing old before their time,
how his little daughter Chloe long ago gave up her crying
as the sound of shots came drifting ‘cross the paddock to the home,
and she knew that Daddy had to shoot still more stock left to roam.

His wife’s hair flecked with silver from the worry and the strain,
it has been six years or maybe more since they had decent rain.
He’s sold the rams, and shot the ewes that he had bought for breeding,
his resources stretched to bursting and what hope he had receding.

He prays each night for family, and prays each night for rain.
Prays to the Lord to help him find the heart to start again.
Though he faces each day bravely, deep inside his heart is numb.
Give me strength Lord, give me courage and the will to carry on.
Check out The Scribbly Bark Poets blog site here -

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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Location: Maryborough, Queensland


Post by Shelley » Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:08 pm

Too true - and so sad.

My husband grew up on the land - he misses the life, yet is thankful that we don't have to directly face these harsh realities now.

Shelley Hansen
Lady of Lines

"Look fer yer profits in the 'earts o' friends,
fer 'atin' never paid no dividends."
(CJ Dennis "The Mooch o' Life")

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