In Memoriam – Robert Hughes

Blow the Winds

Five years gone since my mate left home
he purchased his ticket to slavery
consigned him to the southern land
to wait for me in purgatory.
His pretty girl cried silken tears
sent to the gallows with cotton in her ears
they said she lied by the Rule of Law
born and bred a gypsy woman.

I’ll be going now, and I’ll see you soon
Sailing beneath the rising moon,
I’ll look for you in Melbourne town,
and there’s never been a heart so torn.

I stole an heiress in a field one morn
My heart’s in tatters and my hopes are gone,
In 1825, cold and wet and barely alive
I miss my woman and the babes she’s borne,
Fated to hang by a weeping judge,
Now sailing on the winds of scorn.

Blow the winds and fill the sails
take us to hell in New South Wales
The hulks are full in England
of many more like me
Bound to be Australians
with ironclad guarantees.

Me life’s not me own, I’m a Government man,
don’t remember when me term began,
the squatter’s chains rattle in me bones
to please the whims of the English throne.

Thrown into the white man’s cell
for laughin’ late and givin’ ‘em hell,
grabbed by the coppers, ripped from the land
no migaloo can understand.
In 1985 another Murri suicides,
There’s plenty more in store
from white settlers such as we,
The land would be far better off
without colonial greed.

[Inspired by Robert Hughes’ master work “The Fatal Shore”, and republished to commemorate his passing over. Hughes is among the few who removed the scales from my eyes painlessly, to reveal beauty and truth.

Robert Hughes 28 July 1938 – 6 August 2012]

The New Shock Of The New

Related Links

Farewell to Robert Hughes: polymath in an age of imbeciles
Robert Hughes, pugnacious art critic, author and TV host, dies at 74