Tag Archives: Poetry

Col. Light Sees It Through

 

Col. Light Sees It Through

While researching hauntings in Victoria Square, I came across this poem written by ‘A.M.’. It is a satirical look at goings-on in Victoria Square up until 1930, and strangely enough, it is pertinent today.

 

Victoria Square 1897 – SLSA: [B 1450]


Col. Light Sees It Through

 

Colonel Light planned it all in the pioneer days

And the old city grandfathers fenced it round.

And grass they planted and Morton bays

That flourished apace in the fertile ground.

There teas room to wander, for rest and to spare,

And a shady retreat was Victoria Square.

 

All traffic was banned to the ringed-round street;

As kids we played on the green grass banks;

Our mothers rested tired housewives\’ feet

And weary men voted a weary man\’s thanks.

The darkness brought lovers with tales that are trite

And blessings for thoughtful old Colonel Light.

 

But men with notions of \’progress\’ and \’go\’

Said, \’Cut tis a road from the south to the north

And another east-west across it,\’ – and lo!

It was said, it was done, and through it thenceforth

Wheels rattled and left us at heavy expense

Four scraps of a square and a mile of high fence.

 

Then tramway wreckers demanded their toll

And got it, of course, as tram bosses do.

\’Now pull down the fence,\’ said the corporate soul,

\’Let the proletariat (many or few)

Walk, heedless of entrance or paths if they must.\’

So the fence was exchanged for a desert of dust.

 

Next someone in search of live things to uproot

Cried, \’Down with the trees! They have white ants, or snakes,

Distemper or tick; so put in the boot

And the axe just as promptly before the day breaks.

Thus, wisely forestalling the ratepayers\’ wrath.

We\’ll make this a garden — but nearly all path.\’

 

But will it end there? Let no sceptic scoff,

All are possible things to the corporate mind.

Let\’s glance at the future— and not too far off—

To see what \’improvements\’ the clever can find.

\’Flowers fade,\’ they will say, \’like a once solved charade.

\’Let\’s make it all gravel — one big promenade.\’

 

They will tire of that too and for changes will yearn

And, admitting a failure but saving a face,

Will conclude, \’the scheme\’s fine but we\’ve money lo burn,

So we\’ll concrete or asphalt the whole dusty place.

Not a ghost of a tree, fence, flower or wall

Shall remain to annoy us, no -dashed thing at all\’

 

Some future Lord Mayor or Alderman Mac

Will arise in his day to be the first speaker

With a brand-new idea, the best in the pack,

And shout, \’I\’ve got it! I\’ve got it! Eureka!

This asphalt is hot and hard on the knees,

Let\’s put up a fence, as high as you please,

DIG UP THE WHOLE PLACE AND PLANT GRASS AND TREES!\’

 

And Light in his bronze will stagger, I\’ll swear,

But he\’ll point as of old, indicating, \’Well there

Is the place it\’s to be, MY Victoria Square.\’

A. M.

 

Source:

\’VICTORIA SQUARE\’, The Register News-Pictorial, (19 August 1930), p. 7., http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article53803906.

 

Researched and compiled by Allen Tiller © 2020

THE DAWSLEY GHOST.

 

THE DAWSLEY GHOST.

Oh, have you heard the latest news

   Of how a ghost was seen,

By people whom we cannot say

   Are altogether green.

 

To Dawsley they had been, it seems,

   To hear a parson preach;

And service done they harried on,

   Their cosy homes to reach.

 

T\’was Sunday night, the moon was young,

   And cast a silver sheen

On all the gum trees in the vales,

   And o\’er the hillocks green.

 

ln such, a scene, oh, would that I

   Could wander on that road,

Acknowledge to some charming girl

   The debt of love I owed.

 

Alas! I\’m old, and now from me

   Suck, happy scenes ace fled

With mem\’ries of a lovelit past,

   Long buried with the dead.

 

But these good folk that trudged along

   Were lassies bright and fair,

Whose silver laughter rang upon

   The balmy evening air.

 

And laddies, too, with buoyant heart.

   Beside the lassies strode

With manly, light, elastic step,

   Along that Dawsley road.

 

Old fogies, too, serene and calm.

   Were walking with the young,

Whose blended voices harmonised.

   And through, the wattles rung.

 

In jocund mood, they strolled along,

   Bereft of every care;

When lo! their merry mood was changed

  To grim and horrid fear.

 

From out beneath a bridge was beard

   A deep sepulchral moan.

Soon followed by unearthly sounds,

   And then a horrid groan.

 

“Come down,” a ghostly voice called out,

   “Come down at once, I say;”

But rooted to the spot they stood,

   Upon the Queen\’s highway.

 

The ladies all began to scream,

   As nicely as they could,

While all the men with trembling knees.

   In silent horror stood.

 

Then bounded from that sullied group,

   Young brave and stalwart Joe,

Declaring by his lady love,

   Beneath the bridge he\’d go.

 

Like hero true he plunged below,

   That bridge so drear and dark,

Declaring he would catch the ghost.

   And prove the thing a lark.

 

He soon returned, and said he saw

   A figure white and tall

Quick vanish through a wooden fence

   Through panels, post and all.

 

He said he thought it was no ghost,

   But some \’owdacious\’ fellow

Whom he would like to pommel well,

   Until he\’d roar and bellow.

 

The ladies all admired Joe,

   And gave him each her blessing,

Each wishing he\’d got the chance

   To give the wretch a dressing.

 

So let us hope with all our heart,

   When next he sees a ghost

He\’ll grab him by the heels or neck,

   In spite of rails or post.

 

I send this yarn with true intent,

   In hope that you may know

In Nairne there dwells and flourishes

   That brave young miller Joe.[1]

 

An original poem written by Mr F. Lines in 1877, describing a ghostly incident near Nairne.[2]

Researched by Allen Tiller. 2020

[1] \’DOTTINGS FROM THE DESERT.\’, Bunyip, (24 August 1877), p. 4. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article97220329.

[2] \’NAIRNE, AUGUST 27.\’, South Australian Chronicle and Weekly Mail, (1 September 1877), p. 21., http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article90944379

Shades of Black – Book

Shades of Black

A collection of poetry, prose and short stories written by award-winning historian and paranormal investigator Allen Tiller over three decades. This collection includes many previously unpublished original works written by Allen in his early twenties.

Buy Shades of Black here:

Shades of Black – Allen Tiller

Shades of Black – Allen Tiller


All my life I’ve written poetry and short stories. For a few years I was an editor on what was the worlds biggest poetry website (2002- 2006) Author-Me. I was never confident about letting others read my inner voice, but I eventually overcame that. Putting some of that work into a collection was a daunting, but after an interview with the Rev Shawn Whittington, I thought “what the hell, why not do it? “…

So Ladies and Gentleman, without further Adieu, I present: “Shades of Black”, a collection of poetry, prose and short stories by me 😊

Shades of Black: “A collection of poetry, prose and short stories written by award-winning historian and paranormal investigator Allen Tiller over three decades. This collection includes many previously unpublished original works written by Allen in his early twenties.”

P.S. If you are looking to buy a print copy, with the current exchange rate between the US $ and AU $, it is very expensive for Aussies (other countries isn’t so bad), so I launched a Kindle version as well….hopefully when the dollar is performing better, I might be able to get a few physical copies and sign them, then send them out😊

As always, thanks for your support – it’s much appreciated 😊

Book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1088595367?ref_=pe_3052080_397514860

Kindle Ebook: https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B07WC627NS

Merchandise: https://www.redbubble.com/people/AllenTiller/shop

"Gawler" by La Journie, 1930

 

“Gawler” by La Journie, 1930
SLSA: B 11491 Gawler Railway Station opened in 1857 and the original platform building was replaced in 1879


Every so often whilst carrying out my research I come across delightful titbits about towns or people, generally in the “Letters to the Editor: section of old newspapers. The following poem I found amusing, as I had been researching the building of the Gawler Town Clock, and the animosity from townsfolk regarding its inability to keep time.
 Also, as a born and bred Gawlerite, I can remember older folk than me calling Gawler Antiquated”, so the following poem, with its stinging satire and cynicism amused even more so!
Enjoy!
GAWLER.
A Doggerel.
Sleepy country town
Eyeing, with a frown,
Anything approaching real progression.
Up and down the place,
Filling all the space,
Are oddities that show its retrogression.

Every passing hour,
From the town clock tow’r,
The chimes ring out their merry melody :
Yet often in the night
From the tower’s height,
Come fifteen chimes instead of only three.

Unhappily for you
Should your watches be untrue.
Any evening at all in this quaint town.
You’ll find the clock alright,
But they haven’t got a light,
And the dial is as dark as Pluto’s crown .

To the station if you’d travel,
There’s a mystery to unravel :
How to get there is the thing you want to know.
Prop a post up with your shoulder
Till you see a waggon older
Than the buckboards of a century ago.

Start to shout, and do a dance,
Anything that will enhance
A wild Red Indian attitude, or fierce Berseker air-.
Then the wagon gives a bound.
Sways, and turns two-thirds around —
And the tramcar has another fourpenny fare.

Finally the most amusing.
Is the crowd that stand enthusing
In the middle of the street on Friday night. .
So antiquated Gawler,
Lest you grow any smaller,
Just eradicate self-satisfaction’s blight.
                                                        ‘La Journie.’
1930 ‘GAWLER.’, Bunyip (Gawler, SA : 1863 – 1954), 31 January, p. 10. , viewed 04 Jul 2018, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article96670042

"Gawler" by La Journie, 1930

 

“Gawler” by La Journie, 1930
SLSA: B 11491 Gawler Railway Station opened in 1857 and the original platform building was replaced in 1879


Every so often whilst carrying out my research I come across delightful titbits about towns or people, generally in the “Letters to the Editor: section of old newspapers. The following poem I found amusing, as I had been researching the building of the Gawler Town Clock, and the animosity from townsfolk regarding its inability to keep time.
 Also, as a born and bred Gawlerite, I can remember older folk than me calling Gawler Antiquated”, so the following poem, with its stinging satire and cynicism amused even more so!
Enjoy!
GAWLER.
A Doggerel.
Sleepy country town
Eyeing, with a frown,
Anything approaching real progression.
Up and down the place,
Filling all the space,
Are oddities that show its retrogression.

Every passing hour,
From the town clock tow’r,
The chimes ring out their merry melody :
Yet often in the night
From the tower’s height,
Come fifteen chimes instead of only three.

Unhappily for you
Should your watches be untrue.
Any evening at all in this quaint town.
You’ll find the clock alright,
But they haven’t got a light,
And the dial is as dark as Pluto’s crown .

To the station if you’d travel,
There’s a mystery to unravel :
How to get there is the thing you want to know.
Prop a post up with your shoulder
Till you see a waggon older
Than the buckboards of a century ago.

Start to shout, and do a dance,
Anything that will enhance
A wild Red Indian attitude, or fierce Berseker air-.
Then the wagon gives a bound.
Sways, and turns two-thirds around —
And the tramcar has another fourpenny fare.

Finally the most amusing.
Is the crowd that stand enthusing
In the middle of the street on Friday night. .
So antiquated Gawler,
Lest you grow any smaller,
Just eradicate self-satisfaction’s blight.
                                                        ‘La Journie.’
1930 ‘GAWLER.’, Bunyip (Gawler, SA : 1863 – 1954), 31 January, p. 10. , viewed 04 Jul 2018, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article96670042