There is order, hear me speak,

There IS order among the wreck,

See the pattern, see the line,

Watch now as it all unwinds,

Watch the chaos reach its peak,

Wreaking havoc among the weak.

There IS order, we see it grow,

In the work of the natural world,

For it does know…..

There is form, there is shape,

In every creation it does make,

Though the mallee tree limb will grow,

In wild, twisted wry from the bole,

Does it not have order in seeds it throws?

Does the wild oat not follow form?

The birds their needs, the wild animals born?

Does not the smallest fungi’s struggle to survive,

In magnificence equal the honey bee its hive?

Only humanity turns upside down,

Natural order to satisfy its selfish own,

And though we can legislate, demand, affright!

We can never, never pervert nature’s intent,

For in the end nature will claim its crown,

Howsoever we turn her upside down,

Like the lifeboat designed to “self-right”

Nature has a blind intent to “assignat”,

The cost of destruction by degeneracy.

So be warned.. there IS order in this world,

It is just not the distortion WE wish beheld,

And woe betide us when final whistle blows,

To suffer the blind, merciless, wrath of nature’s scold.

Gemano plays his first tune on his home-made ukulele.

(From ; A Ukulele Opera).

The spotlight on Joe fades and the stage lights up to reveal a group of men sitting around a table playing cards..they stop their game and look to Gemano..some men there turned their heads to the sound of the music..and they smiled..and some call out felicitations and congratulations to Gemano, whom many thought a little more than silly in trying to make a musical instrument out of such inglorious materials…

“Can you play a tune, Gemano?” they cry…several men gathered around him..

“Of course I can! “ Gemano responded “Was I not in a band before I was sent here?….what shall I play?” he asked the now small gathering of internees and outcasts..

“Play us some Verdi”…a wit suggested with a laugh..”Rossini!” another followed…Gemano thought for a moment then responded..

“I know…I will play a bit of fun .. a song I picked up just before I came here ….are you ready..?” and he smiled his big, bright, broad smile for which he was nicknamed ; “The Bay of Naples”…or just “Naples” for short..

The men all clamour ; “Yes..play, play!”

Tiptoe through the Mallee.

Come tiptoe through shed door,

By that rattlin’ door, that’s where I’ll be,

Come tiptoe through the Mallee with me.

Tiptoe with your bag-pillow,

To the water-bag in the mallee tree,

‘Cause they let us all drink there for free.


Shades of..night they are creeping,

Mallee.. galahs they are shreaking,

Drunkards and lazzeroni sleeping,

The charcoal pits are glowering,

All alone I’m dreaming, when I’ll be free.


Come tiptoe through the scraping’ door,

On concrete floor, that’s where I’ll be,

Come stumble through the mallee with me.

Tip toe from your bag-pillow,

To the shadow of the mallee trees,

And stumble through the mallee-bush with me.


Knee-deep…in saltbush we’ll stray,

Brushing…our eyes to keep the blow-flies away,

And if I kick you in the scrub-bush,

Won’t you please just scusa me,

If I see a brown snake have a go at your knee!


So tiptoe through the ant beds,

Through the wombat’s dangerous digs,

Come trip over the mallee stumps with me,

Tiptoe with your bag pillow,

We’ll use it to swish the mozzies away,

While we stumble through the mallee today.


Knee-deep…in saltbush we’ll stray,

Brushing…our eyes to keep the blow-flies away,

And if I kick you in the scrub-bush,

Won’t you please just scusa me,

If I see a brown snake have a go at your knees!


Artini sings; Funiculi Funicula.

(From; A Ukulele Opera….Mr. Foxx is the owner of the camp where the Italians are interned.)

Artini was cutting wood a little way from the river, Gemano was his offsider, but Artini worked so fast and was so good that all Gemano had to do was to keep out of his way and play his ukulele as Artini swung his axe to the tunes…unfortunately, Gemano is still lamenting for his fiancé back home of whom he has yet to hear from because of the war.

“Gemano!” Artini called “haven’t you a cheerful song with a faster beat..something I can really get stuck into?”

Gemano thought for a minute..then;

“What about Funiculi Funicula?”

“Anything rather than your sad laments…I have work to do..”

Gemano plays a lively version of the song on the ukulele and Artini makes words up as he works along with the rhythm..

Some think the world is made for fun and frolic,
And so do I! And so do I!
Some think it well to be all melancholic,
To pine and sigh; to pine and sigh;
But I’d love to spend my time in cutting wood,

I really would, I really should..

To light the blasted air with my axe loudly ringing,

With chips of wood, with chips of wood!

Listen, listen..you can hear Foxxy’s car!

Listen, listen you can hear it from afar!

Tra la la la !  Tra la la la !

Tra la la la !  Tra la la la !

If that’s not Foxxy coming to check, I’ll bare my arse ha ha ha!

Some sing the world is set for freedom dancing,
But not so I! And not so I!
Some sing our eyes could keep from finally glancing,
Upon the sly! But not so I!

But we’re here sweating, smelling oh so sweet,

Divinely reek, divinely reek!

As fun goes, and it shows..It can’t be beat, it can’t be beat, it can’t be beat!

“Working, working all the live-long day!,

Working, working, for as long as they make me stay!

In the spring, in the Summer, every blasted bloody day…

Cutting wood, burning wood till Foxxy gets his pay!. . . “

Listen, listen..you can hear Foxxy’s car!

Listen, listen you can hear it from afar!

Tra la la la !  Tra la lal la !

Tra la la la !  Tra la la la !

If that’s not Foxxy coming to check, I’ll bare my arse ha ha ha!

Ah me! ‘Tis strange that some should take to sighing,
And like it well! And like it well!
For me, I have not thought it’s worth the trying,
So cannot tell! So cannot tell!
I’d much rather die from striving, to go to hell!

To go to hell, to go to hell!

But we’re already there, by the food, I can tell, I can tell, I can tell!

“Rabbit, rabbit..it’s all they got for chow!

Rabbit, rabbit and potatoes stewed so slow…

No garlic,no onions, or polenta, and NO pasto..

Underground mutton is the only food they know.”

Listen, listen..you can hear Foxxy’s car!

Listen, listen you can hear it from afar!

Tra la la la !  Tra la lal la !

Tra la la la !  Tra la la la !

If that’s not Foxxy coming to check, I’ll bare my arse ha ha ha!

Artini’s Song.

Taken from ; “A Ukulele Opera”…

“Tess, the indigenous girl watches as Artini and Gemano work…she then asks why he sings as he cuts the Mallee trees…He replies…

“Well..I’m afraid out here, I am a prisoner and I am also dying..but slowly, and there is no escaping my situation..so it is either the tree or me…and there is no-one to sing for me.”..he thinks for a moment..”unless YOU want to sing a song for me?” and he smiles to Tess.

“I cannot sing your type of song…and anyway, you sing beautifully…can you sing another?”

Artini smiles again and his vanity is flattered..after all, he IS a good singer with a strong voice..He calls to Gemano..

“Gemano…play us the tune of  O’ Sole Mio and I will show this lass how we Italians sing.” Artini leans his axe against the tree and takes off his neckerchief..Gemano sits up and concentrates as he plays the tune of “O Sole Mio”…Artini makes up the words to suit his own mood and situation.”

Artini’s Song. 

“ O’ solo mio,

I am here all alone,

In another country,

So far from my home.

Working for the bastardi,

And the rotten food they feed me,

Without love, without hope and without fazooli!

O’ solo mio,

Will I never be free,

Can there be a lover,

Come and rescue me?

But these bastardi Ostraliani,

Say I must cut the mallee,

Without love, or hope.. ma fongooli!”

O’ solo mio,

This sun is burning me,

Like memories of a love,

So far away from me,

Will I ever see her again?

This side of God’s heaven,

Or am I, Artini to be forever condemmed?

O’ solo mio,

Every day with Gemano,

And his doleful ego,

Singing a soulful aria, (Artini ruffles Gemano’s hair).

He’s longing.. for his Sophia,

This is my fate, too late,

To return in haste to Trentina!

O’ solo mio,

I sing for my Paesano’s,

All my brothers interned,

Fed on stewed rabbit,

From a blackened urn,

Eat up, eat up, my friends,

All that we got, is in this pot, till this war ends!

O’ solo mio!

I am here alone,

In another’s country,

So far from my home,

And these..Ostrali’ bastardi,

Say I must keep on.. cutting the mallee,

Without love, without hope, and to that I say ; MA FONGOOLI!”

Tess and Rosaline’s Song.

Tess and Rosaline.

[A surreal scene from act 3 ; A Ukulele Opera]:

The stage is depicted as the river’s edge…with the cliffs over the other side moonlit…Rosaline stands on the near bank while the indigenous girl, Tess is seen over the other side of the river…the river is narrow here so they both can see and hear each other..there is a whisper of the wind in the gum trees and Rosaline starts to sing ( to the music of a ukulele) a lament to her sadness at leaving the river to go live in the city with her new lover, Enrico … simultaneously, does Tess sing the lament as a sadness on the drowning in the river of her friend, Artini and the passing of the river out of the hands of her people…they both are losing something, one is sentimental, while the other is cultural…their voices mix and match in song and chorus…and their voices echo off the cliffs of the river..

Sung to the tune of “A Londonderry Air”.

O’ River Flow.
O’ River flow, I hear your waters falling,
Tumbling o’er rock and rolling on to sea.
So many years I hear my name you’re calling,
While you’ll be here and I’ll be gone so far from thee.
And never more will I return to hear you,
And never more your waters be my lover’s cue.
Tho’ you’ll be here with sunshine glistening brightly,
O’ River flow, O’ River flow for ever so true.
When days are dark and my hopes they are a failing,
And I am lost as lost, your child can be,
You’ll fill my dreams with hope and promise calling,
And through the nights your flow will carry me.
Tho’ never more will I come to see you,
And never more your waters be a lover’s cue,
It’s you’ll be here in my thoughts so shining brightly,
O’ River flow, my River flow, forever true.


Gemano’s Lament.

I am writing these pieces using well known and beloved music as backing for what I am calling : “Poetry for the heart”…poems to be read in sequence to the flow of the music so as to arouse deeper emotions than would otherwise be experienced…or at least I hope they do…Please forgive me for “stealing” the music, but I can only hope I do the pieces justice….

Gemano’s Lament for his fiancé from whom he was parted at the outbreak of WW2. (from : “A Ukulele Opera”.. https://freefall852.wordpress.com/2019/08/04/a-ukulele-opera/ ) sung in sequence to Puccini’s ;”O mio babbino caro”.

Gemano’s Lament.

“Has anyone seen my Sophia…
Here is her picture..I hold it so dear…
We kissed on the steps at the station,
I put a white rose in her dark hair,
I placed it behind her right ear..
Look, look, you can see it there!
And now she is gone I miss her..
And at night’s end I can’t kiss her.
Has anyone at all seen my Sophia?
Why, oh why is she not near…
Has anyone seen Sophia……
Has anyone seen my fidanza…
We parted at the station and
I put a flower in her hair..
Now I can’t believe she’s not here..
I so want her near me….
Have you seen my Sophia?
My darling…my love…my dear.
Has anyone seen my Sophia?
My darling…my love…my dear…
Come back to me, Sophia,
Don’t leave me here all alone,
Return..and come..back home”…



To be read in sequence with Puccini’s Madam Butterfly : “Un bel di, vedremo”.


(slowly, softly )

Awake unto this new world, my love,

Awake to walk into a new dawn, awake..

So doth sleep maketh thy walk more cautioned,

Must it also make our steps so much more astutely po-sitioned.


But let the rising sun now open our eyes,

And look out to the sky’s horizon.

Speak not now those words that must be spoken,

Let delay such words my heart doth dread……

For I fear such fear of it…..breaking.



Numbness maketh the hand hold stronger,

Forces to grip and embrace more firmer,

Deafness makes the ear sharper listen,

Take in those words that lie to your reason.


Blindness will make the eyes see clearer,

See the true depth of heart and falseness of tongue,

See the goals that your soul can reach for,

Disdaining those who would bring you undone.


(softly softly)

Distance maketh the heart grow fonder,

Let not such distance grow between yourself and mine,

For there is intent to break…those loving ties that bind,

To separate, each from each, to deliberately foil and plunder.



Their silence will maketh our lips sing sweeter,

Each song we sing we will sing much clearer,

Each note and each harmony higher and higher,

Sing sweet song from one voice touching another.


( much stronger)

Sing out my love, sing out…to the heavens!

Join in rich harmony our choir of the souls,

(very strong)

Let humanity’s toil hold the key to such eternal bliss,

Forsake the lost souls that reject eternity’s kiss!


Their path will take them to the depths of their own hell,

To wander aimlessly, swept along as hollow shells,

Pity those who would tread such a lonely path,

Into deep, deep, darkness and despair for lifelong last.



Time has it’s own beauty,

Patience to blunt the serrated,

Razor’d, edge of a shard of flint,

Ameliorate a Panther’s eye its ferocious glint,

Give reason to consider it underrated.


Time will soften the heartless blow,

Levelled by one who should better know..

Soften the scorn of that baleful scowl,

Give good reason to think better now?

Time has its own beauty..we must allow.


Tho’ pointless to plead hopeless case,

When torn from love’s warm embrace,

Heart rendered and broken anyhow,

Better to leave it rest a while,

Let kind Time balm a fevered brow.




Time has a beauty of its own,

Give to or take from great renown,

Favour for those would need respite,

To reflect upon events in the dark of night..

Who made wrong against what is right..

Time’s patient understanding will trip the light.