I recently bought a piece of Australian art, a paper bark picture depicting an aboriginal camp.


Picture this,
A tiny aboriginal
Going to Big Camp,
A stick man worthy
of L. S. Lowry,
Heading for his home-fire,
Spear in hand,
Waving to his kin,
Let me in, let me in,
He was the only naked art
In the pretty picture,
The rest was peeled bark,
Arranged into trees and rocks,
And seaweed formed drifting clouds;
I e-mailed Christies in Sydney,
Asked what was my white man's
Discovery worth in Aussie dollars,
And they told me $100, or 50 sterling,
But there was a problem,
Because the piece was made
From organic materials it
Wasn't allowed back into Oz
Because of strict quarantine laws,
But the little aborigine in the picture
Could return to his Big Camp,
Since he wasn't natural.

Chris Fernie, 2006

Poetry by Chris Fernie
Read 378 times
Written on 2006-11-10 at 22:11

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