Opinion: After listening to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern talking about the Government's Three Waters policy, and Wairarapa farmer Mike Firth's concerns about carbon farming, East Coast farmer and bush poet Graeme Williams has put pen to paper at 2:30 am this morning. He shared his poem, Three Waters, with The Country today.
Dear Aunty Jacinda,
I need to write to you again.
Because this ridiculous Three Waters nonsense,
Needs rapidly flushing down the drain.
I was born and raised in Tokomaru Bay,
And for that reason, luckier than most.
I think that you and the rest of the country,
Should behave as we do on the Coast.
You see when I was at primary school,
And it's only now I stop to think,
That all my mates had brownish skin,
And only two of us had pink.
Freckles I had plenty of
And copped a bit of flack.
I learnt that when you cop some flack,
You simply throw it back.
Nothing was a problem,
Cause we thought we were the same.
It mattered not our heritage,
Or from where, or how we came.
We lived a rich and happy life,
The envy I suggest of most.
A mutual respect by unity,
That is synonymous with the Coast.
Our forefathers worked the land together,
Having cleared it from the bush.
They also toiled in the trenches together,
When shove it came to push.
In every way, in every respect,
They were equally brothers in arms.
Whether it at Gallipoli,
On the rugby field or farms.
I took a stand at Ihungia,
The year was 1979.
An 8-stand gang of Ju Maraki's,
The only pinkish skin was mine.
I was treated as an equal,
After all it's all we knew.
A pity the rest of the country,
Do not do what Coasters do.
Five till five, the daily runs.
There were tens of thousands to be shorn.
My contribution was minimal,
But no criticism there was borne.
Legend Fankie Wharehinga,
One of the most gracious men you'd meet.
Shearing right beside me,
500 - consistently and neat.
A beer together at knock-off time,
It was always Lion Red.
Heaps of fun and laughter,
To the quarters from the shed.
Showers were by hierarchy,
Despite it being an English tank.
We were in a gang together,
But we never preceded Frank.
Listen to Graeme Williams recite Three Waters for Jamie Mackay on The Country below:
You see, the water belonged to all of us
And equally we did rely.
Ownership's a crock of sh*t,
When it's falling from the sky.
We're all in the same shower together
and of that we should be proud.
The shower belongs to all of us,
when she's falling from the cloud.
Ihungia's now in carbon credits
And that's a bigger crock of sh*t.
For when it comes to logic,
There's not even a teenie, weenie bit.
Perhaps, Aunty Jacinda,
You could explain to me just why?
How a German owning a Kiwi tree,
Can pump endless crap into the sky.
I worry about the future,
for our grandies and tiny totters.
With the illogic, logic of carbon credits,
And the bureaucracy of Three "Whaters"
Read Graeme Williams' previous poem The Golden Goose here.
"Whater" we going to do about it?
"Whater" we going to say?
"Whater" we going to do in the sh*t?
When sure will come the day.
I return you back to Ihungia,
An iconic station before the trees.
Beef and lamb and orchards,
With honey, birds and bees.
I think of all our forebears,
And the ilk of those like Frank.
Logic says, Three "Whaters" and carbon credits
Best put in a septic tank.