Executed in cold blood, terrified families on the run.

Scattered dreams, fleeing from the mayhem,

Beaten faces, drowning in pools of blood!

Desperate cries … pulses racing … cloaked in despair,

There is no choice    BUT  to escape this dreaded affair!


Slipping away … under the blanket of night,

People smugglers … assisting their plight.

Overcrowded,crammed,compressed and squashed!

Empty pocketed yet full of new hope,

Not too far now, until the Australian coast.

Silent lips laced with the salt spray.

Fever … Hunger … Children crying.


“Opportunists!” …  “Queue Jumpers!”  …  “Illegal Immigrants!” 


Fingers wagging, tempers flaring,

Restless mouths spewing fire.

A round of beers, ignorant chatter,

“The footy’s on” – Their glasses clatter.


Waves crashing around the rust infested hull.

The decrepit vessel is going down.

An infinite sea extends its arms,

Frenzied panic drowns out the seagulls.

Frightened refugees abandon the decks,

bright orange vests around their necks,

- Bobbing in the water.


The navy rescue, a temporary saviour,

Marooned indefinitely on Christmas Island.

Treated like criminals

Piled up into detention,

Battered hopes … ensnared behind barbed wired.

Detention! - Isolation, oppression and stifling heat.

No way out … psychologically scarred.


In parliament house, the conductor begins,

He reads his audience - In falsetto he sings ...

“They threw their children overboard!”

Waving his baton,

his orchestra responds.

The deceptive violins begin to PLAY,

A deformed melody - Swooning and swaying …

His distorted symphony hatches vitriol and racial fear.

“Opportunists!” …  “Queue jumpers!”  …  “Illegal immigrants!”


Fingers pointing, tempers soaring,

Itchy mouths, judging blindly.

“They threw their children overboard!”

“Yeah! – Those illegals have thrown those kids overboard!”

Detached from compassion, too busy to worry,

Throngs of people on the beach,

Far from the reality of detainees sewing their lips.


What Democracy? Don’t you mean political hypocrisy?

Where’s the truth? Where did it go?

Never mind, the Federal Election is on.

Shredded facts … Through the propaganda machine,

The buck STOPS with the Howard regime!


                           “We decide who comes to this country and the circumstances

                             in which they come…”    

                                                                                                        John Howard 2001

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Wow really insightful poem! I watched the refugee doco that was on tv recently and this poem really complements it! I like the many contrasts that you have and the ''falsetto"....very creative!

Cheers Jeanelle! Appreciate the feedback. It's something I was compelled to write about. The world needs to know about the deception and propaganda that played out at the time.

Hey Mary, I have taken a leaf out of your book :-) Still a big fan of your poetry. Thanks for the kind words. I am actually writing a heavy metal song using this poem as lyrics.

Hey Mary, Children Overboard has finally been set to music. The song has just been written and we are laying the track down in the studio shortly. It will feature on our upcoming metal album. I belong to a heavy metal band called LOST MESSIAH.

Would be great to collaborate one day using one of your poems and set it to this dark genre....I think it would be a perfect fit :-)

Take care


Wonderfully crafted, covering many truths... sewed lips.. you mean the guys in greece? 

Cheers Kaveh! Appreciate the feedback :-) "Sewed lips" has a multilayered meaning here. It is also an allegory for the quiet ones in our society that see but do not speak out. As for the Greeks....hardly! There seems to be a protest in Athenian streets every few days. Sad to say the land of my ancestors is slowly dissolving into an irreversible chaotic state. Somehow, they have survived all these millennia and will continue to.

Keep writing and take care.


Thanks Thomas 

It was a putrid bit of politics. This is what I sent to a couple of Satirists and there reply back in 06 

I'm probably telling you blokes nothing, but the incumbent government 
is picking some gems to parallel out 'Catch22' . earlier on with the 
honouring of the dunder head in charge of immigration department for 
his cock ups, matches up with yossiarian being promoted to captain 
and given a medal for fucking up and getting kraft killed going over 
the target twice. and this sign up to australian values rings the 
echo on the loyalty oath crusade under the chapter titled 'captain 
black', I'll leave it up to you fella's to judge who's 'the dead man 
in yossiarians tent' . Is it just me or is Micthin really trying to 
tell me that by buying telstra shares a couple of years back for 
seven dollars that I can now sell them at a 'profit' for three 
The reply;
 I've always said that everything I ever needed to know about politics or corporate business I learned when I read Catch 22.  Love the line about going over the target twice.  Personally I reckon the dead man in Yossarian's tent would have to be a toss up between either Bronwyn Bishop (the coulda been that never quite went away) and Peter Reith for disappearing four days before his last federal election (you may recall he was on a plane to Perth for four straight days to avoid the childern overboard disclosure discussion).  I must say I do sometimes feel like Hungry Joe - screaming my dreams every night and only geting peace when Howard inevitably wins another election!!
Is it Kundera that said the 'fight against power the fight against forgetting'
Hey that's cool! Love the catch 22 analogy. Is Glen .... The subject should never be buried. Take care


These words touch so true in a world where it is easier to turn the other way and detach our emotions and indulge in our materialistic pleasures instead of helping those who are really suffering.


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