ME OLD BANANA BOX
Sittin’ in me favourite chair and feelin’ quite aghast,
something led me wonderin’ ‘bout all the years gone past.
Maybe ‘twas fatigue I felt and mused with just a sigh,
came to me like lightnin’ yet I don’t know how or why.
Four score years had come and gone, but where oh where, indeed?
‘Twas no use lookin’ back in time at every little deed.
More’s the point I asked meself, ‘How many left to go?’
I’d seen so many things in life and done so much, ya know.
I rest me feet upon the box – same box I’ve always had,
a good old fashioned solid one left to me by me Dad.
It used to hold bananas and it came from who knows where,
possibly from Gunnedah, Dad used to work near there.
I glanced at it and stared again before it dawned on me,
that crate had many uses - a part of the family,
it stored me kindlin’, housed a pup and chores along the way.
I’d had that old banana box forever and a day.
With respect I raised me feet and had a damn good peek,
I grabbed it firm and turned it, not knowin’ what to seek.
That box had spent some time with me; much more time than me wife,
and sure as hell that wooden crate had never caused me strife.
It’s been a solid friend of mine and never let me down,
it never gave me misery and never made me frown.
The box I mean, no, not me wife who lost her bloody life,
my best crate had been a mate, much better than a wife.
It used to sit outside the door to store me firewood,
once it stored some bulbs I found, by God they were so good.
And then one time I changed all that and had another job,
buried the bulbs and sat me box on the wood stove hob.
To once again store some twigs to start the old fire stove,
and there it did a wondrous job, I’ll tell ya now, by jove.
And still I found another task for me tough old wooden crate,
became a ferret’s home just near the old back paddock gate.
There was a time in Grenfell Town where Lawson hailed from,
‘twas there I lent me old crate to a snivellin’ bloody Pom.
He said he was a poet and on me box he used to stand,
recite sweet words, smile a lot, and wave his whoppin’ hand.
Finished his spiel, he grabbed me box and quickly off he went,
runnin’ fast I caught that bloke, to him me spleen I vent.
He ranted and he raved but all his actions were in vain,
a shifty one was he, but now I can’t recall his name.
When I went down to Sydney Town I took me box with me,
it housed me clothes, some shavin’ gear, me billy and me tea.
‘Twas like a wooden suitcase yet most others sure would laugh,
it might have looked real rough, ya know, but did the job by half.
Them other blokes had fancy gear yet nothin’ like me crate,
yeah, me and that banana box are still a pair to date.
Amazes me to look back at where both of us have been,
up some hills and down some dells, amazing what we’ve seen.
Right now I’m here and so’s me box, I’m lookin’ at its charm,
scratched, with dints and travellin’ wounds; and none have done it harm.
I think I might retire it to a spot inside somewhere,
maybe place it near me bed to save on wear and tear.
It’s surely been me closest mate, that travelled wooden crate,
we’ve weathered storms and troubled times; survived the lot by fate.
I stood right up and grabbed me box, the time indeed had come,
to rest it from a useful life – revere it, like me Mum.
At last I found a perfect spot close to me rockin’ chair,
right beside the piano stool, it fitted neatly there.
I placed a doily square on top to spare it from more pain,
in case I dropped some ciggie ash or something that would stain.
It looked damn good located there and really brought a grin,
‘cause every time I’d used it, it had offered no chagrin.
Of times when I was just a lad, a-swaggin’ here and there,
that banana box remained me mate, we travelled everywhere.
Here I sit a-smilin’ with me mate here by me side,
it’s right here to the right of me, just like a country bride.
So glad I had some common sense to honour work well done,
promote a box that’s always bin just like a favourite son.
Oh, what a mighty pair we’ve made together as a team,
it sure as hell ain’t fantasy and nor is it a dream.
Not sure how long I have to go, ‘Dear Lord, just let me be!’
The one thing I can tell ya though, ‘That box will outlive me’.