Hippo New Year or how 2010 can sing

In this age of greetings via sms, status updates and emails, it was a real delight to receive an original poem from Australia to Vienna in real handwriting and written in ink. So let me share

A Christmas Postcard by and from Jake Moss

Travelling from sunset to velvet sunset
across this rusty land
the wind blows a spirit not of Christmas
yet one we white fellas can’t understand.
Here, the white Christmas of European towns,
fantasies only to be found in children’s books.
This mystic land Australia whispers,
‘Put your ear to my breast
stories here are to be heard
they’re not buried in the looks!’

No tree branches tapping at the windows
as the warm cold pushes against the pane.
But the mighty river red gums creak and squeak
as the cockatoos riot in their branches,
protesting for rain.

No Gluhwein, handsome winter coats and gloves
to canoodle with the snow.
Undress yourself and go barefoot
upon the burning ….
… pitch of earth
exotic cards … crow!

This spirit of Christmas seems only a postcard,
a tale written by a hand other than our own.
We must write and tell them of
the native flora we’ve grown.

The pine needles on our family Christmas tree are plastic
but there’s a reason for this to be:
our living rooms are far too small
to house a eucalyptus gum tree!


You’ll notice the dots – that’s where the snow seeping into my letterbox left waves on he bottom of the card. No worries, Jake – it made it all the more personal and human. Ever heard of a smudged sms? And Jake, if you still have those words, please join the dots for me, will you?

Best wishes for a hippo new year and may 2010 sing!