Annual event keeps bush poetry alive

Article image - Annual event keeps bush poetry alive Bill Bruce – who will soon turn 100 – took out the People’s Choice award at the Bush Poet’s Smoko.

Lovable larrikins and budding bush poets converged for the 15th annual Nebo Bush Poet’s Smoko last month in Isaac Regional Council in Queensland.

Local poet Dan Lockyer hosted the event at the Nebo Museum and his daughter Kate Lockyer provided musical entertainment.

Yarns were flowing during the Amateur Poetry Competition with Bill Bruce taking out People’s Choice for Best Poet.

Deputy Mayor Cr Geoff Bethel said the upcoming centenarian was voted the clear winner by the audience with his impressive rendition of Banjo Patterson’s classic, the Man from Snowy River.

“Bill, who turns 100 in January, is a Nebo Bush Poets Smoko veteran known for his passion for poetry and recited several poems from memory.

“Around 70 patrons were treated to entertaining performances by enthusiastic poets, bush yarn spinners and enjoyed a scrumptious smoko.

“John Lloyd returned to share his bush poems and Shirley Friend, formerly of the Naked Poets, paid a surprise visit and wowed the crowd with her irreverent rhymes,” said the Deputy Mayor.  

“There was also unplanned, but moving tributes in prose, to the late Snow Burgess.

“Wife of the late Tom Oliver, Louise, also recited some of the stalwart’s poems he’d pencilled.”

The Bush Poet’s Smoko is an annual event that not only keeps the Australian tradition of bush poetry alive, but also gives back to the community.

Funds raised through the raffles were donated to the Nebo Town Rural Fire Brigade.

Meanwhile, entry proceeds will help the Nebo Museum continue to preserve local historical exhibits.