I don’t know if this is a poem or prose but this is the way it came out..

 glass colour

Fresh Water in a Clean Glass


You can learn a lot from watching TV.

Mainly it’s the little details

around the fringes of the Main Action,

you have to pay attention.

The small gestures. The unremarked aside.

The way someone down the back slyly smiles

at an inappropriate moment..

Yes there’s much the alert viewer can discern

from all these little clues.


The other day, for example,

I saw this short segment on the news,

Some refugees celebrating their first year

in this country. The announcer commented briefly

then moved on to the next topic,

but something had caught my eye

and my attention lingered yet.


The refugees were all young men from the Sudan,

dressed alike in immaculate suits,

with bright and colourful shirts open at the collar.

They seemed like decent, cheerful chaps, I liked them

and wished them well.

They were sitting around an ordinary suburban living-room,

nothing flash, just

a quiet celebration of friends,

happy that their fortunes have improved.


But this is the thing that struck me most;

It was with water they drank their toast.

glass light cropped 

Yes, they had a big jug of cold water on the table

and poured everyone out a glass.

Not champagne, not wine or spirits or beer

or even fruit juice or Coca Cola mighty symbol

of the Western Way!

No, their celebration beverage

was no more than this;

fresh water in a clean glass.


I watched them and I noticed

that before they drank the water,

each one of them sort of..paused,

and looked at the glass in their hand,

a moment of appreciation it seemed

for the small miracle they were holding,

fresh water in a clean glass.


And when they drank, you could tell,

they tasted it.

Oh reader! When was the last time

you really tasted the water you were drinking?

When was the last time

you did more than take a glass of water for granted?

Or even think about

the modern engineering miracles,

of dams & desalination & recycling plants

& the miles & miles of pipes

crossing and criss-crossing the landscape,

bringing life-sustaining water

to every acre of this dry, parched country?

Or think about the complexity and order

of the social structures that maintain it,

all the engineers and Public Servants

working each and every day

to make our comfortable urban lives possible?


(Authors note; As you’re reading this on computer

I take it for granted most of you also have plumbing)


But this is what Freedom tasted like

to those who fled here,

to this fat, complacent, self-congratulatory country,

from war-torn, drought-ridden desert lands.

They didn’t come here to drive big cars

and get rich or bludge on Welfare

like so many think.

They just wanted somewhere to raise their kids

and have fresh water to drink.


So this is what Prosperity meant

to these children of Poverty.

This is what Celebration meant

to these serious young men.

Not your typical Australian beer-fueled bacchanal at all,

but the quiet company of friends,

and fresh water

in a clean glass. 




Two evils


and for those in the Reverend’s locale..

Kurilpa place setter for2013 with frame



The Reverend Hellfire is… (complete in 50 words or less)



~ by reverendhellfire on September 15, 2013.


  1. A very beautiful and appropriate thought! I drink water every day, and probably take it for granted most of the time. But sometimes I do think how good our water supply is here in Canberra…

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