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A Fair Spin

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis 1876 (Auburn) – 1938 (Melbourne)

Righto!
I'll give the game a go.
They say I should be circumspect; but I don't care a hang.
I'll bang
The cows in slang . .
'Ere! Wot's the game?
Don't this Australia want a decent name
For treatin' other blokes all on the square?
I wouldn't dare
To sell crook rabbits down in Spadger's land;
Fer, if the ole tarts down there should complain
Jist once, why, all me custom
Would go right up the pole.
Upon me soul!
Yeh see, I trust 'em
An' they trust me.
Because they say, 'This rabbito, why 'e
Gives us a dinkum spin.
'E wouldn't take us in.'
Now, ain't that nice?
I don't like givin' statesmen my advice,
But - well, I'm just an ord'nary sorter bloke,
Still, I think it is getting past a joke
When coves that earns reel decent livli'oods
Rings in crook goods
Jist 'cos it pays.
Aw, spare me days!
I got some sense of wot the 'eads calls pride,
An', for to do a snide,
Crook deal like that
I'd
Sooner eat me 'at.
Fair dinkum: when I sum the 'ole thing up.
But still, I sometimes think
That us blokes - toilin' for a bit of dough -
Gives the straight game a go
Better than all the 'eads who play a game
Wot gives Australia a rotten name.
Blimey! I sooner be -
(Now, let me see
Wot's this that Wordsworth says?)
Why, spare me days!
'I'd sooner be'
(Yes, me!)
'A pagan, suckled in some creed outworn,'
Than some smug Christain 'oo puts up to scorn
Australia's name.
Aw, strike! We play the game:
Us rabbitos. An' - on the square -
Even if I 'ad 'eaps of gilt to spare,
Like some of these
Exporters that I knows,
I wouldn't go
And play the game so low.
I'd not send one crook rabbit overseas,
No, not to please
A flamin' King;
It ain't the thing.
Desertin' Aussie is a dirty trick.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis, better known as C. J. Dennis, was an Australian poet known for his humorous poems, especially "The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke", published in the early 20th century. Though Dennis's work is less well known today, his 1915 publication of The Sentimental Bloke sold 65,000 copies in its first year, and by 1917 he was the most prosperous poet in Australian history. Together with Banjo Paterson and Henry Lawson, both of whom he had collaborated with, he is often considered among Australia's three most famous poets. While attributed to Lawson by 1911, Dennis later claimed he himself was the 'laureate of the larrikin'. When he died at the age of 61, the Prime Minister of Australia Joseph Lyons suggested he was destined to be remembered as the 'Australian Robert Burns'. more…

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    "A Fair Spin" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 28 Feb. 2021. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/6135/a-fair-spin>.

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