Colleen Wright

Rookie (Central west of New South Wales, Australia.)

Joe Blake. - Poem by Colleen Wright

Yeah, sweet sixteen, and way out of sight
of the town's folk - and wonder you might.
Yes, we lived on a farming and grazing property,
so understand you would, of my frightening story.

It was a Saturday and my two brothers and my Dad
were building a tennis court on the property we had.
I so desperately had to go to the 'loo' -
and that is what I then just had to do.

From my worn bicycle I did smartly wheel
into, and as quickly as possible I did heel,
into the nearest of the outside 'loos' of the house...
Let me tell you now – I was no longer a 'shy mouse'.

Ah, as my jeans quickly dropped, and I sat to much relief,
I sat and thought with a sense, that was not of grief,
of how lucky I was to be where - I was born -
and that bought me to reality- without a yawn.

I heard the sounds of the rollers being used
to smooth the surface of the courts accused.
The intermittent voices of the males of the place
where from a distance in my mind - worked in haste.

I heard the sound of a frog which was common in those days,
and to my ears it was more as though in a background haze.
My thoughts lingered on until I thought, 'Hello! This is near! '
So I listened much closer, now let me assure you, my dear.

The sound was as though muffled, and yet close - I would bet.
But what could it be – sounding very near to me -and yet?
I pondered a while and then did wonder -
just what it was that I was sitting under.

That muffled sound was of a struggling frog
as though he was far away in a distant fog.
It soon did show in the picture I did see,
'twas a true story - just between you and me.

With a quick glance above, and afraid, I did turn my head
to find that snake alive and well – 'twas certainly not dead!
That 'Joe Blake' was hanging down very near to me
from the water cistern! So then I did flee – instantly!

From there I must have scurried as quickly as I could,
and as I did I looked briefly above he was not where he should,
Yes, hanging so near to my head. Now I was then really AWAKE!
It's moving head and fangs were too close - Oh dear, for God's sake!

Not a second thought did I make as I blindly scrambled out from that place,
and I had to step nearer the monster before opening the door, closer to my face.
Within that second thought I flew out of that loo' and yelled for my Dad -
'Help, come quickly, theres a snake in the 'loo', not a moment to be had!

My Dad was there within a short moment in time.
He knew my urgency was real and not in my mind.
My Mum she thought I was imaging the scene -
she'd not known such a thing- Oh, that was mean!

To the gun shed my Dad did swiftly run -
he just knew - for me - 'twas no real fun.
Out with the double-barrel shot gun he did go
and into the loo he was ready for that snake to show.

Just who's territory it was – [and it was not that of the snake's]
my dear Dad would soon tell that story – and for Heaven's sakes,
he did wait for the demon's head to rise and to surface to see
the truth and reality of the situation – just you believe me!

I peeked to see just what was happening - from the laundry.
I watched and waited as my Dad did - for the snake to see.
As minutes went by, my precious Dad did wait -
for that 'Joe Blake', and for me - he did not hesitate.

My head almost burst with the sound of that gun
as it blasted that snake from here to 'kingdom come'.
The 6 foot long black serpent fell instantly to the floor
as my Dad glanced quickly towards me from that door.

That dreadful memory does linger on now and forever more,
as in the loo ceiling - a huge hole is visible from the door.
So do remember when a frog you should hear,
take note there is not also a 'Joe Blake', my dear.

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, July 20, 2006

Poem Edited: Wednesday, August 18, 2010

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