The Digger (Apologies to Rupert Brooke)

The Digger (Apologies to Rupert Brooke)

If I should cark it, think only this of me
     That there’s some corner of a foreign field
That is terra Australis. There shall be
     In that red earth a mate of yours concealed;
A bloke Australia bore, shaped, made aware,
     Gave, once, her sand to scorch, her bush to whack;
A mate, Australian, breathing hot summer air,
     Salt in his stubble. Sunburn on his back.

And think, this heart, guiltless as a little tyke
     A pulse in the eternal outback-beaten heat,
Gives somewhere back the light Australia’s giv’n;
     Her bronze and golden dreams; her sunset sky;
And laughter, learnt of mates, who’ve bugger’d it
     Their hearts sleeping, under an Aussie sun.

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