Johnny of Flowerdale

Paul J. Bannan
Here's a couple from Australia, written after Black Saturday.. No copyright infringement.. I wrote them. Great webite.

Johnny of Flowerdale.

I knew Johnny when he was a green new chum.
Keen to learn – Never found him sitting on his bum.
Trained together on group exercises, learning to save the water.
And how to protect homes not made of bricks and mortar.

Deployed near an’ far, up to the New South Wales’ border.
Gotta pity the poor strike team leader, trying to keep us both in order.
On the fire line, our tankers followed wheel to wheel.
Amongst the smoke and ash we stood, heel to heel.

Over the years, we shared many a chat and a well earnt smoke.
Banter always flowed easy – each ready to wear a joke.
On the job, we relied on each other to guard each other’s back.
As we fought the hated enemy, along an overgrown burning track.

Johnny made us laugh and stopped us being glum.
Always up to mischief and looking out for fun.
In Gippyland, we “borrowed” a tanker and went off drowning worms.
When the fish weren’t biting, entertained us with rhyming words.

Johnny had a better gift of the Gab and for writing verse.
                    Helped him out of the darkness and to beat the Blue Dog’s curse.
For he saw service here and elsewhere on that dreaded day.
Only one of us made it back into Flowerdale upon Black Saturday.

Johnny was no New chum – He had served before.
Kilted legs supporting a body, that was steel to the core.
Kept on fighting battles – toe hard against the line.
Played it tough, knowing he was almost outa of time.

Yes, Johnny – been before, was a Man amongst Men.
We are Honoured, Those, whom he called Friend.
Flowerdale should be proud of Johnny – never leave.
Sad are we now that he has, How our hearts do grieve.

Johnny – Unsung Hero, You saw and fought more than your share.
That load upon your shoulders was difficult to bear.
Well as of today it’s gone, like wind swept Class A foam
Johnny of Flowerdale, You’ve been released, Head on Home.

© Paul J. Bannan
Yea 2013