Grandpa Bruce called a family meeting,
A gathering of his abundant clan,
To promote his scheme to restore family honour,
and tell them where THEY fit within HIS plans.
I heard Aunty Maude whisper to Mum;
“He’s been going on and on about some list.”
and Mum said back to Aunty Maude;
“Are you sure that he wasn’t pissed?”
Grandpa Bruce stood up – kind of slowly,
Surveying his collected kin,
Cleared his throat with a cough and a shake of his head,
Opened his mouth and said, “I’d like to begin …
By thanking you ALL for coming here,
and to console those who worried that I might be ill.
Rest assured that your attendance here today,
Makes youl contenders for a mention in my will.”
“Thankfully my health is not the issue,
although my heart has been on the blink,
since Mother and Me were abandoned last year,
and our family’s name was flushed down the sink.
So if you want to ensure an actual inheritance,
I want irrefutable proof of MY blood in YOUR veins.
That honest determined hard working Country spirit,
Good health, family values and a few brains.”
“The annual A&I Country Show is coming up.
Last year I was the laughing stock of my neighbours,
because YOU ALL had more important “THINGS” to do,
and they blame Me and Mother for your collective behaviour.
This year our family will enter in everything,
and maybe they’ll stop taunting me down at the Club.
I’ve never liked the company of the Hippies and Hoodlums,
that they cater for up at the Pub.”
Grandpa took a piece of paper out of his pocket,
Unfolded it slowly straightening the page,
Searched frantically everywhere for his glasses,
As is common amongst folks of his age.
When he located his specs on his forehead,
He smiled sheepishly – coughed to clear his throat,
Then he said; “There were a lot of things to consider,
so I wrote myself this-here note.”
“If you women don’t dominate in the Pavilion,
don’t expect to be welcome at next Christmas’ Dinner,
I expect exhibits in the cooking, sewing, flowers and crafts,
from the most experienced right down to beginners.
And fellas don’t leave it to the women,
there’s Produce in the Pavilion too.
If we pool our best eggs and vegies,
WE might even win a trophy or two.”
Lisa and Kylie … I want to see you there this year,
Riding your ponies in the Junior Horse events.
Set a good example for the little ones,
And if you win, I’ll buy you each nice presents.
Dawn … I know I’ve never seen you wear a dress,
But we could enter you into the Show Girl Quest,
Don’t worry, your cute dimples and that lovely smile,
will distract the Judges from your lack of breasts.”
“Grant’s son Les … you have that useless Rottweiler,
It will never be a working dog you know.
But maybe he could manage to win a ribbon or two,
slobbering on the Judges at this year’s Show.
And that Kelpie bitch named Ruby,
You know … the red pup that we found at the dump?
The way that she gets out over fences,
First Place is OURS in the Dog High Jump.”
“Young Robbie … we know you’re no Cowboy,
But you can sing a song as good as the best,
So all you have to do is tune up your guitar,
and enter in the Talent Quest.
We could even snag a Quinella there,
If the twins get up and do a dance,
Or a Trifecta if little Tristram does his Magic act,
WE’d be in there with a TRIPLE chance.”
“Our David claims to be a Poet and a Dreamer,
And I’ll admit that I have heard worse.
So instead of moaning about being misunderstood,
How’s about you write us some clever Bush Verse?
Bush Poetry must have syntax, rhythm and meter,
Unlike these so-called academic modern schools,
But MOST importantly Bush Poetry MUST rhyme,
There is definitely NO straying from THAT rule.”
“As for the Livestock and the Poultry,
Our bloodlines are truly the best,
All WE have to do is get them there,
and the beasts will do the rest.
So polish up your boots and buckles,
Have a wash and comb your hair,
I have always been partial to the Grand Parade,
And I’d dearly love you ALL to join me there.”
“On Sunday afternoon in the Pavilion,
We’ll hold up our heads and kick up our heels,
At the Bush Dance we’ll sashay and do-se do,
Do the quick-step, barn dance and reels.
I’ll be the proudest man in the Boozer!
Totally recovered from the torment of this last year,
And depending on OUR family’s overall success,
I might open my wallet and shout the lads a beer.”
“With that in mind I now beseech you,
To get up off your arses and have a go,
By participating and winning ribbons in,
This year’s Annual A&I Country Show.
When OUR family has asserted OUR Rural Heritage,
I will once again be able to walk tall.
WE’ll show the Robinsons, the Smiths and O’Briens,
In fact, WE’LL SHOW ‘EM ALL!”