Rizpah (Maud) Plumb


Frances Thompson's Page

Maud liked writing, and often put down her thoughts about everyday life in simple and humorous verse. These are some that she wrote in the 1970s and 1980s.


“What will I give for fathers day?” is the cry.
Will it be socks, shirt or tie?
Perhaps I'd better give a pen
To keep locked safely in his den
And save myself so much flurry
When he wants to write in a hurry.

Now what about those presents that are stacked away -
Lovingly given on some previous Father's Day?
Think I'll wrap them up anew –
Doubt that he'd have a clue.
No, I'd better not come that caper -
Though I could use some nice new paper.

Ah, I know what he'd like best for sure -
A new wheelbarrow - full of cow manure.


He sits in his chair
With pencil in hand,
What he's engrossed in
Some can't understand.

When asked, he just says
That it broadens his mind.
Says Mum with a grin,
"Not his mind - his behind".

"What is it," you ask,
"That he does without pay?"
(It isn't his tax form.)
To this he will say.

"Get on to the pension,
As fast as you may,
And start doing GO-WORDS –
They're in Woman's Day ".


I wonder - when Saint Peter went afishing,
Did he rise at dawn
And disturb the peaceful morn
With cries of “Where's my net?
I hope it's not still dripping wet!”

“Better hurry, can't be late. There's Andrew calling at the gate.”

I wonder - did he sit with patience,
Unusual to a man,
Dreaming of a full and frizzling pan.
Then when the day was done
And his catch amounted to exactly none,

I wonder - was he heard to pray,
“Forgive me Lord, the big ones got away.”

The Family Home at Barcaldine


Your shape was like the figure O (nought),
Because you didn’t eat the things you ought.
You thought the calories you would count
And then you’d have the right amount.

Your daily breakfast was one egg,
“Not another bite!” you’d beg.
For lunch one apple you would eat,
Not even a wee slice of meat.

Your dinner was just greens and cheese.
I’ll bet you longed for pies and peas.
Sometimes you ate two dates, one prune –
It’s a wonder you didn’t swoon.

To eat that ghastly silver beet
Must indeed have been a feat.
Of cakes and pastries you had none,
So now you’re like a figure 1 (one).


Oh, to be in Brisbane now that summer's here,
With the blue sky up above shining so bright and clear,
And smell the fragrant frangipani,
In the parks where they abound,
To see the gorgeous jacarandas,
Make purple carpets on the ground.
Or to be in a small country town,
Where the sweet acacias grow,
And see the golden sunsets
That only Western folk do know.

But, oh, what joy to be in London.
Now that winter it is there,
And see the lovely snow flakes
falling softly through the air.
And gaze upon the trees
In their winter coats of white,
With their trimmings of red robins.
Oh, what a truly glorious sight.

To hear the bells of great cathedrals,
Ringing out so loud and clear
The message that is Christmas,
For young and old to hear.
And listen to the Carollers
As they're walking through the snow,
Their faces bright and rosy,
In their flickering lanterns glow.

See and enjoy these wonders,
And when your travelling days are o'er
Please God, you'll wander back
To your own Australian shore.


12th August 1986

It's eight years today
Since you said, “I'll love honour and obey.
I'll care for you through rain or shine,
And hang the washing on the line.”

“I'll rake the leaves, and clean the bin.
Then I'll bring the washing in.
I'll cook the food you like to eat,
And give you such a lovely treat.”

“I'll keep you free from strain and strife,
Because you are my loving wife.
Then happy we will be,
On this our wedding anniversary”.


You wear a cap and sometimes a white gown.
But you mustn't ever wear a frown.
You cheerfully hand out lots of pills
To people with their many ills.

And always heed the call of "Pan!"
From woman child and also man.
I wonder how you keep so calm,
While you stick that needle in my arm.

You don't even give a quiver,
While you've got me all ashiver.

The Midlander

They’re coming from near,
They’re coming from far,
Some are coming on foot,
Others coming by car.

There’s men and there’s women,
There’s young and there’s old,
And nobody cares
About the heat or the cold.

Perhaps you are thinking
They’re going off to their churches.
But they’re just on their way
To take up their perches.

Because they all think
That there is no doubt,
They have to be there
To help the Midlander out.

--- ooo OOO ooo ---


“I think I'll make some pickles,” says himself to-day,
“Then for items such as these, we'll not have to pay”.
Then he took the cookery-book
To see how long they take to cook.

From the kitchen came the yell,
“Where's the sugar?” - you'd think he couldn't spell.
“How many ounces to the cup?
This damn flour won't mix up”.

“They're not cooking as they should.
Will you get another piece of wood?
Now give it just a little stoke -
I'd like to stop and have a smoke”.

What a mess! Sugar here, flour there,
Dirty dishes everywhere.
I suppose I'd better wash them up.
It’s time for tea and there's no clean cup.

At last they're made, and packed in bottles tall –
Enough to last us till the fall.
And of course they are first grade,
These beaut pickles that he's made.

Now there's one thing that I'm sure about -
Next time he's making pickles I'm going out.


I'm sick with the Hong Kong Flu.
All I can say is “Ah choo!!!”.
Can't eat any chow. Better try somehow,
Or I'll have to call Dr. Arfoo.


I've just been reading in the local news
That they're putting coats upon the ewes
To keep out burr and all the seeds,
The bright sunlight, dust and weeds.

They've not decided yet what kind,
But have a few ideas in mind.
There's twelve ounce canvas duck,
Which might be a bit hard to tuck.

Then there's a kind of polythene sheet,
Which could look very smart and neat.
With lightweight terylene they'd have the “see-through” look
And get their pictures in the latest fashion book.

I wonder will they have the maxi or the mini,
Or just a plain old fashioned pinny.
The maxi style is rather silly,
And the mini can get somewhat chilly.
Perhaps they'd better settle for the pinny
And make the sheep look fashionably skinny.

Yes, the poor old grazier is in terrible strife -
He has to clothe his kids and also his wife.
And now that he has to clothe each ewe,
He's got himself into such a stew.

At night he lies awake - he cannot sleep –
He's counting coats for thirty thousand sheep.


When St. Peter to you says, “Hello!”
And you're wondering where you will go
For your greatest of sins,
Of putting 'roos into tins.
Says he, “I send you below”.

Once we were famous for our kangaroos.
Now they're only seen in zoos.
They are used for making mats
And for feeding our pet cats.
Now all we're famous for is booze.


I've got a funny sort of urge,
To go and have a little splurge.
I don't know much about this game,
But I'll take a risk just the same.

“You must study the form”, the experts say.
Now tell me, what is that, pray?
The horse's shape, I suppose they mean –
Whether he's short, fat or lean.

They say he's in the race - but he's “not running”.
Now that sounds strange, and rather cunning.
Then there's the handicap - the weight they put on him.
How can he win with those extra pounds upon his skin?

You've got to have “the drum”, the information.
What a silly lot of conglomeration.

Now let me see - there's Jonah out of Whale;
Somehow I think that he might fail.
Then there's Pie Face out of Dough -
He could be too heavy and too slow.

Oh, I wish I knew which one would win,
But I'll probably resort to closed eyes and a pin.
Look! It's Pie Face that I've picked!
Oh, I hope he won't get licked.

Now they're racing! What’s that I hear?
“And here comes Pie Face - bringing up the rear!!”

Copyright © Maud Plumb 1994


Frances Thompson's Page