In the beginning were the words

and the words were printed in ‘The Age’

and the words became a deed of sale

for a piece of unbuggered bush

in the bush-be-buggered country.

And the sale became a track,

a shack,

a dog and two cats,

and two city runaways

confident that ignorance would see them through.

And the ignorance became a nightmare

that rained forever,

was always delivered late,

broke down as soon as you were broke

and sacked you the first day the sun shone.

But the sun did shine

and the sunshine became foundations

and the mud and the sand and the straw became


and the bricks became belief

and belief became relief,

as the even bricks stacked up the odds

in favour of home,

where the hearth is,

for a dog and two cats and two country rebels,

who began with words,

bought a dream,

learned through lack of knowledge,

huddled together in pig-headed defiance of adversity,

danced in the sunshine

and made bricks and laid bricks

to live within their own shelter from the storm.

In the beginning they were impulsive,

in the middle they were insane.

At the end they are resolutely and incorrigibly


and they live on the only road

that leads to home.


This piece won a Highly Commended citation at the Deniliquin Writers Festival in 1994. The judges commended it for “its humorous demythologising of an urban-country movement evident these days. Nicely shaped too.”

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