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Rated: 13+ · Poetry · Biographical · #2197458
Poem written in remembrance of Les Murray. 3rd in Newbies + Open Poetry Contest.
Homage to Les

Les Murray, that is, Australian poet
(yes, I know, oxymoron),
Bard of the Outback, native
of New South Wales, a better man
than even Gunga Din,
died just yesterday, well, April
this year and the world much worse
in consequence.

In the back streets of the web
I found him in a poem called
Vindaloo in Merthyr Tydfil
and how unlikely can you get,
Aus poet in Wales, the home
of (bows low) Dylan Thomas?
He sang truth in the neon lights,
gazed unblinking in the bright day
of a desert continent,
could write of pigs in language
all their own, then draw a man
weeping in terms divine,
sing of bush poems and thorns,
of city streets and a woman
turning like a comet to the sun.

Who now will speak for us,
the words birthing in our depths,
the suppresséd thoughts
we could not say? Just you, Les,
a man so loved even his enemies
wept at his funeral. Australia’s
you were but also their gift
to the world and in some future
unimagined, when you take
your place amongst the greats,
my oxymoron joke will die
pariahlike and dry as dirt.

Lines: 35
Word Count: 194
Free Verse

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