A Simple Pencil Strike

A Simple Pencil Strike

by Lyn Lockrey

Each pencil stroke we make still counts,

a mark on ballot paper,

as every booth the landscape makes,

sketched in till three years later.

Four times theyve won the chance to draw,

to illustrate their picture

but smudged the central themes, the core,

with a conservative stricture.

The economys been their prize,

shaded in by the mineral boom,

WorkChoices, the nasty surprise,

with the poor worse off so soon.

They Tampad with an ocean scene,

labelled, children overboard,

then drew new lines of razor wire

and the Pacific, Nauru fraud.

Ad hoc scribbles, sketched for the polls,

Indigenous issues so late,

hospital meddles, nuclear power,

its those pollies juggling our fate.

The people drawn are small, unclear,

masking realities raw,

innocent, buried in Iraq,

collaterals of an unjust war.

Hidden in a shaded corner,

is a wheat pile marked, Saddam,

backs are turned, no comment, made,

such a dreadful Australian sham.

Kyoto is clearly missing,

rubbed out to mimic George Bush,

aspiration, now the banner,

to lead their climate change push.

Howard its been to change this scene,

of shell-backs all in a row,

theyve tried to lead, looking back,

so its time for many to go.

The canvas needs to be renewed,

a fresh landscape must be drawn,

with clear visions of the future,

for our children yet unborn.

Pencils worked in Nineteen-o-one

and its still the same today,

the voters simply marked the box,

twas their right to have a say.

What irony, to change this scene,

you could think it was a joke,

in our world of IT savvy,

its still a simple pencil stroke.

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