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The Birdsville Ode
by Alan Larkin

Have ya been to Birdsville have ya mate?
We was there in 93
We did a tour. Outback Patrol
Just five good mates and me.
We'd come with songs and puppets
To do scripture in the school
With Bible story drama's
And a clown who played the fool.
We'd already been to Nyngan
Brewarrina. Charleville.
Then flew out by Windorah way
To the Pub at old Birdsville.
We circled round and landed,
Parked the plane right near the Pub
Looking forward to our time there
To a feed up and a scrub.
We drank a round of lemon squash
In the famous public bar
Then made our way to the "lodgings"
Which we rate at "half a star"
Three rooms, all fully carpeted,
(With a liberal coat of dust)
And fully "air conditioned
(the windows had no glass to bust)
A general lack of furniture
Showed restraint in overheads
And we were sure to sleep in comfort
(As long as no-one used the beds.)
One cot was wired together.
Lest it sag right to the floor
Another lacked so much support
We left it folded by the door.
Not a chair was there between we six
So we chatted standing up
No table, just the fridge top
No room there to put a cup.
It was covered with "amenities"
The tea and coffee stuff
A toaster, kettle, sugar
But no milk? enough's enough!
The coffee smelled a little suss
Like it'd been drunk before
But we drank it anyway
As we chatted on the floor
One room had a wardrobe
Another only had a coat hooks
But my room had just a lonely shelf
(not strong enough for books.
One good thing though, and that's for sure
We could not fault the grub
We had several hearty dinners
In the meal room at the Pub
We even did a show there
To entertain the guests
Sang some songs and did a drama
We enjoyed that time the best.
Yeah We been to Birdsville mate
Yeah The lodgings were quite rough
But we survived it, and enjoyed it
We even went out further west
By Andamooka way
Did some shows there in the church
and the school, then headed back next day
Via Leigh Creek, Tiboobura,
Broken Hill and Wellington
It seemed to take no time at all
But nine whole days had gone
We saw the western country
Ministered to folks "outback"
Encouraged them for Jesus
Not to give up or grow slack
All our needs our God provided
As we ministered, we grew
All our prayers were fully answered
Will you dare to trust God too?

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