Ode to Friday: Murray

Les Murray

The people are eating dinner in that country north of Legge’s Lake;
behind flywire and venetians, in the dimmed cool, town people eat Lunch.
Plying knives and forks with a peek-in sound, with a tuck-in sound,
they are thinking about relatives and inventory, they are talking about customers and visitors.

In the country of memorial iron, on the creek-facing hills there,
they are thinking about bean plants, and rings of tank water, of
growing a pumpkin by Christmas;
rolling a cigarette, they say thoughtfully Yes, and their companion
nods, considering.
Fresh sheets have been spread and tucked tight, childhood rooms
have been seen to,
for this is the season when children return with their children
to the place of Bingham’s Ghost, of the Old Timber Wharf, of the
Big Flood That Time,
the country of the rationalised farms, of the day-and-night farms,
and of the Pitt Street farms,
of the Shire Engineers and many other rumours, of the tractor
crankcase furred with chaff,
the places of sitting down near ferns, the snake-fear places, the
cattle-crossing-long-ago places.

From The Buladelah-Taree Holiday Song Cycle, Les Murray (Australia)


Image: Les Murray, by Bob Baird


10 thoughts on “Ode to Friday: Murray

    • That makes me laugh. Les joined the workforce diligently like we all do, when he was young, and after a remarkably short time decided the world of offices was not for him. He promptly went back to the farm in outback Australia and resolved never to do that again. And somehow he has made a living and a worldwide reputation from writing poetry ever since. So you got him for sure: he’s not taking crap from anyone.


    • Good, there you are. I made your brazil nut cake. Great flavour but maybe different from how it’s meant to be. I didn’t have enough mixture for 2 tins, only 1, and I used glace cherries (are they the same as maraschino cherries?). Here’s a photo,


  1. I’m glad you gave it a try. It looks really good. That’s the way mine look. I haven’t cut any this year yet. Made a number of white fruit cakes too and some persimmon. I use maraschino cherries for this one they aren’t the same as glace. I use the glace in the white one.


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