Sunday, 24 January 2016

Reclaim (Australia Day) by James WF Roberts

Reclaim (Australia Day)
©James WF Roberts

Fighting uphill battles
not for land, not for oil
or gold, or flag
but recognition.

No language no names
no religion
song lines cut with a bayonet
and re-tied with barb stretching
almost the entire length and the breadth
of the middle of a continent.

Pride rekindled at Redfern
treaty for the end of a shadow war
marching on the bridge
pride and hope, hovering in the air,
now dwindled back to the fringes
of who gives a fuck…

Thousands marching
unjustified patriotic front
trying to reclaim, their ideological,
yet fictitious past—reclaiming nothing
more than white wash
25th of January,
it wasn’t an invasion,
because us Whites
don’t class it as a war,
or an occupation,
or a would-be mass extermination!

How do reclaim a country—that you never owned?
How can take back ‘values’ that don’t exist
abstracts, I might as well say
I’m reclaiming my right to laugh at the Moon!

How can you
how can we ‘take back’
what we already stole, in the first place?
nothing ceases to amaze me more
than white entitlement
Wearing the Australian flag; as a cape, a turban,
or a sarong does not make you a patriot!

Eureka flags tattooed on your back or your chest
doesn’t mean the same as the Texas Stars
or the Confederacy flag!

Do you even know all the verses to our national anthem?

“For those who’ve come across the seas,
we’ve boundless plains to share”?

How many of you dicks,
have actually served in the military?
how many of you have sworn an oath,
to God, to Queen to country?

Call me a Leftie,
Call me Un-Australian
Call me a member of the black arm ban
of history…

But! I’ve done my bit,
I volunteered, I took my oath
for my slouch hat and my steyer
for my pack and standing guard
at the eternal flame,
on Anzac day…
am I not more patriotic than you?
But does it matter anyway?
Does a change of date
a change of name
change what happened all those
years ago?

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