May 4, 2017



We have countries
In the blip of our world
In the universe who have / had
Little or no regard
For other countries’ customs / culture

These countries have demonstrated
Personal entitlement

  • borders
  • resources
  • religions

From time immemorial.

And very little has changed
Apart from a feeble,
Ongoing attempt
By a League of Nations
Headed by a well known
World identity

Bi-annually plucked
From a list of other well-knowns
To head this toothless tiger
Of a now United Nations Assembly
In enforcing humanitarian values
On planet earth

People who are equally intent
On forcing their greed for power and prosperity

  • machete,
  • machine gun and
  • guided atomic missiles

On other planet earth people.

In this flurry of misadventure,
Toe-to-toe situations
Have escalated
To full on

The distasteful word War,
Has been watered down,
In an attempt to camouflage
The reality of murder
And mayhem
That exists
Amongst our many;

  • lunatic,
  • greedy,
  • feeble


Mind’s eye attempt at management.
Which in many cases
Has proved no less
Than an ego-based race
In property development

And baseless congratulatory speeches
Blurring public service time
In a haze of smog
Shielding the reality
Of their handing-over
(A hollow, clanging baton)
To the next ineffectual leaders
Commencement of equally-ineffective
Time in office.

JT “May the 4th Be With You”

My novel “The Ute” – now under $5

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April 24, 2017

Some Made it Home

Some Made it Home

Wheat crops roll out endlessly,
France across to Rome,
interspersed with monuments,
battles fought out far from home.

Clustered on a hill slope
in regimental lines, remembrance
crosses clearly mark
those didn’t make it home.

Tended lawns and garden,
guides describe the battle plan
as every paddocks horrors
told across this gentle land.

Shellfire ripped asunder,
trench warfare first-hand,
agricultural harmony
smashed by war’s mailed hand.

Armistice rolled slowly fore,
decisive battles plot the course,
farmers plough along the trenches,
reshaping bombed out cratered stretches.

Harmony returns at last,
sign posted by long lines of crosses,
in regimental fighting squares,
poised on hillsides gazing out.

Missed the ride, some made home.

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May 14, 2016

Lest We Forget

Lest We Forget

We know how to fight
And we celebrate

Celebrating our losses after each valiant test.
On front lines forever
In a world in a mess

Celebrating our losses
After each valiant test.

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April 17, 2016

Over the Top

Over the Top

They shot ’em at Gallipoli
Young blokes not near their prime
Mowed ’em down like mongrel dogs
Leadership left far behind

Lost in lifetimes endless rush
of monetary gain.
And as the wheel of life revolves
the dead stack up again

They shot ’em at Gallipoli
They shot ’em on the Somme
Their leaders camped up well behind.
Front lines they fought and won

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May 8, 2015

Peel Back the Layers

There was a time
There were some fights;
Not for fun – maybe not right;
Simply fighting to survive,
Surviving in a way few knew:
Uncomplicated, unrestrained
Open road on life’s highways,
Hard on your heels,
A baying pack,
Bail up quarry;
Want ’em back,
Back from the ranges and gullies behind
Out from craggy mountain divides.

Bad times making sad times,
Bad times getting worse.
Tunnel light flicks, almost lost.

Laugh down the barrel,
Dare ’em to shoot,
Advisin’ ’em gently
To shoot straight and true;
Otherwise, eternity’s racing at you

Peel back the layers
Of callous and grime,
Peel back the layers
On muscle and mind,
Unfolding a collage
Of people and times.

Searching for something,
Perhaps the next ride,
Fixed on a carousel,
Steam building inside.

Massage on muscle,
Unlayering minds.
Wheeling, rotating,
Thrusting in line.
Music exhales,
Notes catch and unwind,
Swirl in the breeze,
Notes caught in a mind.

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May 1, 2015 ,

In a Poppy Field of Fire

In a poppy field of fire,
Bogged in mud in Flanders mire,
Poppies dancing; dry cut leaf,
Pressed and rolled up in a sheaf,
Mainlined in a bulging vein.

Messages flick through a brain,
Shot through with doubt and nagging pain.
Through a wall of stop-and-go
Positives click on a screen;
Crackling shortwave, fading scene.
Pictures roll in melange:
Distorted voices, twisted rack*
Windlass spokes wind each word back.
Jumbled sound in sludge-drunk mind;
Pounded leaf and bulging vein.

Tied off thumping; each heartbeat
Tingling fingers; hand numb; asleep.
Released a rush spread through the veins.
Narcotic rush fizzes the brain:
Pictures roll, clearing, blurring fading scenes
Memories etched in stark relief
Rotating on an axle frame:
Blurred spokes speed, turn down the feed,
Grinding inexorably.
In a poppy field of fire,
Bogged in mud in Flanders mire.

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April 17, 2015

Anzac Spirit

We’ve lost the Anzac spirit
That got us where we’re at
We’ve sacrificed the sacrifice.
Those never made it back.

We’ve lost the Anzac spirit
Broke the battlers cast
Replaced tradition with a reset button,
on a faceless computer mask.

They banned the use of common sense,
abolished ‘ave a go.
‘Til all is level ‘n’ all’s complete
‘n’ no one has a go.

Work Safe’s disastrous duty
of care ‘n’ pre-start meetings,
All meet there.
Shifting idly foot to foot.
Ticking off each box by rote,
each inane pre-dawn parade.

Replaced tradition with a faceless mask.
Sacrificed the battlers cast.

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April 17, 2015

War Time & Want

It’s back to the people
In war time and want
On backs of the people
Battling along
Spearheading the struggle
Hand-balled their way
Coping their best
As fronts give n take.
Back to the battle,
Religion dictates
Throw in the people.
Religion dictates.

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May 19, 2014

Enduring Along

They slogged at Kokoda,
endured Tobruk,
El Alamein
was finally took.

They pioneered on,
back on new land blocks.
Worked along steady
enduring along.

Then on in the sixties
a band of the boys
went drilling & trucking,
prospecting the land.

Pushing the limits
as nor west they forged
Following tracks of prospectors before.
Establishing railways,
way out in the bush,
dredging out harbours,
an all time record push.

On as the seventies
and eighties rolled round.
Shop stewards from Glasgow,
exact toll from the land.

An insidious drag
as strain is increased
with Oc’ health & safety,
added to the list.

Computers & cabinets
all jammed choc a block,
with job safety analysis
reports from the lot.

Where everyone’s seated,
pre-start meetings on,
and we’ll line up again,
check for booze ‘n’ the bong.

Finally we’re out there,
out on the job
Out there unhappy,
enduring our lot.

As on the queue stumbles,
first onto the plane,
to the bus where I’m taken
again to retrain.

Back to the mess queueing again,
day shift’s pouring in from busses ‘n’ cars
Acquaintance renewed in the passing parade.

Brief stopover pedalling,
fast in the gym,
game playing’s over
as time whiles away.

4am start up,
off to the mess.
Breakfasts dished up,
get it down ‘n’ let’s go.

Enduring the pre-start
and JSA game blow in the bag,
first one for the day.
As Oc’ health ‘n’ safety’s
patrolling parade,
impacts each minute of each passing day.

‘Til finally it’s over,
one sleep ‘n’ I’m out.
A week to recover,
home on the block,
Enduring along,
till its back here again.

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April 21, 2014


I don’t need a bugler blowin’ Reveille,
to rally me to the cause.
I’m waiting for more
to rise to the call
and help patch
the cracks
in the wall.

Our culture’s shot through
from the red, white and blue
proudly flown in peace time and war.
Stories from old,
clear in my mind.

The old man with his mates
and their humour,
sometimes black,
with knowing, wry smiles
Blown out with ambush and disasters.
Battling the odds as they tried,
winning and losing,
breaking even,
returning for try
upon try.

Front line troops from Gallipoli to El Alamein,
Western fronts devastating front-line.
They fought in ’em all,
the short, long and tall.

Blocking the japs on Kokoda
before pushing them back to their shores.
They snap to attention
And pay their respects,
laid wreaths to mates
gone before.

Closing up ranks
as roll call numbers decrease
as deceased names appear
on the wall.

In memory of soldiers who fought gamely on
and played
the best game of ’em all.

I don’t need a bugler to call me
or see names on memorial walls.
Etched in my mind eye’s the vision,
as they marched to the Sar-major’s call.
Each playing

the best game of ’em all.

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Some Made it Home
Lest We Forget
Over the Top
Peel Back the Layers
In a Poppy Field of Fire
Anzac Spirit
War Time & Want
Enduring Along