On Australia day we celebrate
How in 1788
Captain Cook sailed Sydney way
And stepped ashore at Botany Bay.
The date was 26th of Jan
The arrival of European man
Upon an island vast, unknown
Which the Aborigines called home.
A harsh and unforgiving land
With a barren heart of sand
Sharp rocks that crack in burning heat
A wilderness where serpents sleep.
Here convicts and free settlers came
With scarce a penny to their name
When the cry of “Gold!” in Ballarat
Lured many to try their luck Outback.
The States became a Federation
And are now a multicultural nation
With the ‘Whites Only’ policy repealed
New arrivals come from far afield.
New citizens sworn in on this day
At official ceremonies say
They are proud to sing “Australia Fair”
And this ‘Lucky Country’ share.
(c) Poet in the woods 2014