An illustration of Christmas in Australia.‘The Tunnel to Australia’ by Jeff Eardley The Society December 23, 2021 Culture, Humor, Poetry, Song Lyrics 21 Comments . The Tunnel to Australia It’s raining every day in Merrie England. It’s falling from the sky most every day. But I’ve just heard about a place that’s burning, In a country that’s so very far away. I’m sure that they could use some extra water. This stuff that’s lying all across the land. __So, we ought to just up sticks*, __Grab our shovels and our picks, And embark upon an enterprise so grand. We ought to build a tunnel to Australia, It could be the greatest thing we’ve ever done. __And wouldn’t it be good, __To eat our Christmas pud, While sitting underneath the burning sun. We wouldn’t have to wear our Christmas jumpers. We wouldn’t need old Santa and his sleigh. __We’d admire the Desert views, __From the backs of Kangaroos, So, let’s start to build a tunnel right away. Now the Aussies are a very cultured people, They like to drink and have a bit of fun. As long as you don’t talk about Rolf Harris, The Ashes, or Olivia Newton John. And they’ve given old Ayres Rock back to the natives, No longer can we walk along the ridge. __So, we’ll have to just make do, __With a wallaby or two, And a stroll across the Sydney Harbour Bridge. We wouldn’t have to cope with all that flying, We wouldn’t have to stay in Singapore. We’d leave St. Pancras station in the morning, And get to New South Wales just after four. We’d crack a tube of Fosters on the journey, With a barbie as we bowl along the track. __And we’d have a singalong, __To Charlie Drake’s best song, On the boomerang that never would come back. . *up sticks: go to live elsewhere . . Jeff Eardley lives in the heart of England near to the Peak District National Park and is a local musician playing guitar, mandolin and piano steeped in the music of America, including the likes of Ry Cooder, Paul Simon, and particularly Hank Williams. NOTE TO READERS: If you enjoyed this poem or other content, please consider making a donation to the Society of Classical Poets. The Society of Classical Poets does not endorse any views expressed in individual poems or comments. CODEC News:Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window) 21 Responses Peter Hartley December 23, 2021 Jeff – on the face of it this is a brilliant idea and I don’t want to throw a wet blanket over it all but you’d probably need one. So far the nearest we’ve got to Australia by public transport is 192 feet down a lift shaft at Hampstead on the London Underground. Even at that depth it’s starting to feel a bit warm. You’d be sweating like a pig well before you reached the centre of the earth. GPS doesn’t work at that depth and you’d probably emerge in the middle of an outback bush fire. It’s a great poem and I bet you could set it to music but the idea needs a bit more work. Reply Jeff Eardley December 23, 2021 Peter, I’m sure that the Fort Worth art heist mob could make it work, particularly utilising the underground pumbling skills of the “Timber Yank” (anag) My childhood hero, Jules Verne, was on the right track but even he could not have anticipated the pleasures of 11,000 degrees Fahrenheit. Surely a case of cremating the passengers along with the sausages. Reply Paul Freeman December 23, 2021 Do you have to bring your own didgeridoo? Nicely done, Jeff. Reply firstname.lastname@example.org December 23, 2021 I’m more of a wobble-board person myself. Thanks for the comment Paul and Happy Christmas to you. Reply Brian Yapko December 23, 2021 A very fun, whimsical fantasy, Jeff. What I want to know is how to make Christmas fruitcake using vegemite? Reply Jeff Eardley December 23, 2021 Brian, we don’t have Vegemite in England. We have Marmite, a similarly disgusting concoction that is apparently very good when spread on food. Thanks for the comment and a Merry Christmas to you and yours. Reply James A. Tweedie December 23, 2021 When I lived in south Australia back in 1984/85 there were those who favored Marmite and those who favored Vegemite (I preferred Vegemite) but it was also clear that Vegemite was considered indigenous insofar as the joke was that the product was dredged up from the bottom of Sydney Harbor—which brings us back to the subject of Jeff’s amusing poem speculating on the potential benefits of winter tunneling from northern (up over) to southern (down under) hemispheric locations. The possibilities, of course, are endless. Thank you, Jeff, for taking us on such an amusing ride. Reply Jeff Eardley December 23, 2021 James, thanks for the amusing comment on the merits of vegemite. In the days of pre-woke cancel culture, our mischievous Monty Python boys had some great fun with our Antipodean friends. Their “Philosophers Song” taught me more about Plato, Socrates et all, than any number of dreary textbooks. Margaret Coats December 23, 2021 Fun song, Jeff! Maybe you can sell it to the Xmas muzak makers for next year. That recent Fort Worth heist was small, compared to your Mexico-London tunneling with El Chapo a few months ago. I did notice that El Chapo made a quick getaway by airplane. Where can you go for New Year’s? As for too much water at Christmas, four days of rain are now expected in Southern California, where Englishman Albert Hammond said it never rains. To Hammond’s credit, his 1973 song treats perpetual Cali sunshine as rumor rather than news. And though we have plenty of unwanted rain here, Australia is currently accepting no parcels from the United States, for fear of delta or omicron on the mailing label. Merrie Christmas to you and yours, wherever you are! Reply Jeff Eardley December 23, 2021 Margaret, I hope that El Chapo is looking forward to his Christmas lunch in ADX Florence, and that you and your family enjoy yours, and have the most joyful time. Thank you for your chuckling comment and for your inspiration to all of us. Best wishes from over here. Reply C.B Anderson December 24, 2021 This project is as likely to be accomplished as completing the wall on our southern border under the current administration. But I appreciate the thought. There’s nothing wrong with Australia that a good dose of common sense wouldn’t cure. Reply Jeff Eardley December 24, 2021 Mr Anderson, beware the spectre of Australian cultural attaché, the great Sir Les Patterson who will be paying you a visit any time soon. A Merry Christmas to you and yours. Reply David Watt December 24, 2021 Jeff, your poem is a ripper! With an expected temperature of 30C tomorrow, we sure don’t need our Christmas jumpers. In fact, Christmas dinner outside in the shade is our plan. For some reason we sometimes wish we had snow for Christmas, just like in the movies, but that would be an unlikely occurrence. You managed to include most of our Australian culture, even Rolf Harris, who was once more popular than beer at a BBQ. Thanks for a highly entertaining read. Merry Christmas to you and yours. Reply Jeff Eardley December 24, 2021 David, some years ago we had a famous folk ensemble called “Roaring Jelly” who did a song called “Christmas in Australia” which had us all singing with great gusto. I still remember the chorus to this day… Christmas in Australia is Christmas in paradise, Christmas in Australia is basically, BLOODY NICE, Bruce is going steady with Sheila, And Sheila’s going steady with Bruce, If you haven’t got a Christmas suntan, You’re a pommie and you ain’t no use. A very Merry Christmas to you all. Reply Norma Pain December 24, 2021 Well, it’s snowing here in beautiful Parksville, British Columbia and I think I’m allergic to it, so I’m all in on a tunnel ride to Australia. Thank you Jeff… that was fun. Reply Jeff Eardley December 24, 2021 Thank you Norma, and thank you for all the chuckles and belly-laughs you have given us this year. Keep em coming, I’ll be looking for them. Have a Joyful Christmas. Reply Norma Pain December 24, 2021 Thank you Jeff and much joy to you this Christmas. Mike Bryant December 24, 2021 Jeff… IF you ever do construct that tunnel to Australia… or anywhere else, please consider a drop tunnel. I know you can do it! Imagine… only forty-two minutes, more or less, to anywhere on earth. Love your poem… sets my mind aspinning… of course that might be the sugar dumplings. https://www.thebigquestions.com/2011/08/11/tunnel-vision/ Reply Jeff Eardley December 24, 2021 Mike, we were going to spend this evening with a glass or two of port, a mince pie and a couple of Scrooge movies. We are now surrounded by slide rules, calculators and log tables (Susan will explain) after reading about drop tunnels. Lesley is a retired maths teacher but this has her analytical brain completely bamboozled (good word) and flummoxed (another.) Thanks for a brilliant and intriguing poser. Reply Susan Jarvis Bryant December 24, 2021 Jeff, I love this idea and I love the very English ‘jumpers’ and ‘pud’. I love the rhyme scheme, and your rhyme and rhythm are spot on. Just one criticism (very rare for me). The mention of Rolf has cut me to the quick – I can’t even utter the word ‘didgeridoo’ without a tear springing to my eye. That aside, this poem is a triumph and has given me a huge festive grin. Thank you very much! Reply Jeff Eardley December 24, 2021 Thanks Susan and sorry about the R*** quote. It was a phenomenal fall from top entertainer to universal loathing. He was banged up in Stafford jail, about 20 miles from here. I hope you both enjoy your party this evening and best wishes for the New Year. Reply Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYour email address will not be published.CommentName* Email* Website Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email. Δ This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.