Locally known as the Big Swamp, which is a misnomer because it is not a swamp, it is a wetland in the true sense. I believe that in our Australian context the use of the word swamp is government/developer code for waste land – you can guess why. But to call it a wetland is to honour it and which of course leads to its protection. This a true riparian juncture between creeks and wetlands, and a wonderful ecosystem.
I had a thirst like no other I’d had
so I went to the bar and asked for a drink.
“What’ll it be?” the bartender asked.
“What mixer?” he enquired.
“O just give me some strychnine.” I said
and his jaw hit the ground with a, like,
that’s weird, are you completely mad
ain’t gonna happen kinda look.
“Just joking mate.” I laughed.
His eyebrows were question marks,
I could see, so I added –
“Well, isn’t that what we do with our water?
plastic, refuse, car bodies and waste,
we’ve filled the wetlands
and poisoned the place?
Rust with your sparkling sir?
Oil with your tap?
A bag with your Riesling,
wrappers with shiraz?
Or how about some soup with plastic string?”
Now we would never eat or drink that,
but I often wonder how the ducks cope
or the frogs survive,
our world is a toilet
in which we breathe and dine,
where no one can flush.
©Paul Vincent Cannon