The cartoonist Lofo has illustrated Overland for yonks. He also writes verse, as below:

Why I like Melbourne:A very old-fashioned poem

You’ll find no shark
In Noble Park,
It’s too far from the sea.
Snakes do not kill
In Yarraville
(another place to be).

And if you fear
The grizzly bear,
The tiger and the lion,
You safely go
To Ivanhoe
And find a bed to lie on.

Or you may dread the octopus,
The rhino or the nozerus,
The red-hot flowing lava,
The elephant,
The fire-ant –
You’re safe in Balaclava.

No killer whale
In Armadale,
No giant anaconda,
No poisonous frogs,
Nor falling logs,
You’re good in Moonee Ponda.

No giant beast
In Richmond East,
No ape and no hyena,
No killer bee
In Ripponlea.
Sleep tight in Murrumbeena.

And when your favorite aunt is dead,
‘Cause giant bats have killed her,
You can be reasonably sure
It wasn’t in St. Kilda.

Jeff Sparrow

Jeff Sparrow is a Walkley Award-winning writer, broadcaster and former editor of Overland.

Overland is a not-for-profit magazine with a proud history of supporting writers, and publishing ideas and voices often excluded from other places.

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  1. I know every one is a critic but ‘must be the zeal’ makes no sense at all.
    I’d also add that there are giant bats in St Kilda — I’ve seen them.

  2. Jeff, who are you to curse,
    When you didn’t jibe in verse!
    Nicholas, thanks for the location –
    How I dig couplet dictation!

  3. The question was posed light-heartedly, without the intention of a serious discussion. With that said, it’s an interesting question, but I don’t think it could be enlarged upon in couplets.

    Jeff, not to be knee-jerk, but I’d like to point out that ‘if location must be the zeal’ can easily be interpreted as ‘if location must be what we’re zealous about’, and ‘every one’ is actually one word!


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