One afternoon, ‘neath forest tall, where Sunlight dons disguise, I saw a sight few people see (unless they’re telling lies); For under Swamp Mahogany there stood attired in green, An amusing little fellow, spouting phrases coarse, obscene. I asked him, “Sir, what ails you? Why curse when all around, the scent Of Eucalyptus, fair sight of blossoms bold, improves the bent Of others, eliciting from lips, praises, sweeter phrases Than those you cast abrasively ‘til Nature’s grace erases?” Though surprised to see me, he told of his lament. “The Breeze’s Careless bluster has muddle-mixed my gumnuts by her sneezes! Since sun arose this morning, beneath lowest branches wild, I’ve been picking, grading, gumnuts into piles: ‘Bush Blend’ and ‘Mild!’ How can a gnome make coffee without gumnuts freshly grounded? It’s cause enough to stir the tongue of one whose plans have foundered! ” So naturally, I lent a hand - although the task was tricky; And together we re-sorted gumnuts, mild first, then sticky. Then to my great amusement, using hobnailed boots to pound, He danced a jig upon the nuts until each pile was ground. Contented, and with kinder words than formerly he’d muttered, He poured two mugs of ‘Bush Blend’ - in between sips, this he uttered: “Here’s a toast to kindly strangers, courtesy of Gumnut Mick. I may be on the short side, but with hobnailed boots I’m quick; And though not quite Arabica and often prone to bluster, My brew’s infused with bloom of spring from Eucalypt robusta.” Next time you’re drinking coffee, spare a tender thought for Mick; A connoisseur of little means, resorting to a trick, Of clever substitution, wrought by dancing, gnomish blending - Barista of the Aussie Bush, elusive, worth befriending! David Watt is a writer from Canberra, the “Bush Capital” of Australia. He has contributed regularly to Collections of Poetry and Prose by Robin Barratt. When not working for IP (Intellectual Property) Australia, he finds time to appreciate the intrinsic beauty of traditional rhyming poetry.