Friday, 22 May 2015

Small Town Memorials support

I decided that putting my illustrations into the same post as the text of the poem (Smalltown Memorials, by Geoff Page) would distract from the poetry so here they are.  I have, in the spirit of the poem, largely restricted the images to memorials in smaller towns.

 "Just the obelisk" Captains Flat, about 50kms by road from Canberra.

 "A few names inlaid"  Tumblong, on the Hume Highway SW of Gundagai.
"More often full-scale granite", Deniliqin in the Riverina (SW NSW)
"A marble digger" Walgett -between Bourke and Moree, (NW NSW)
"a thickening of houses"  Hill End, North of Bathurst
"a few unlikely trees"  O'Connell (near Bathurst).  In this instance the trees themselves are the memorial.
"A marble digger" Walgett - between Bourke and Moree in NW NSW
"The next bequeathed us Parks and pools" Scone - a larger town, in the Hunter Valley. 
"Demanded stone" Coolac - recently by-passed by the Hume Highway a few kilometres North of Gundagai.
 Another stone: Cargo - between Canowindra and Orange.
The next few images reflect on recent additions to memorials.  I haven't tried to describe them poetically, since my efforts in that form approach doggerel - from underneath.

The poem was written in 1975 and thus couldn't consider the memorials to the Vietnam War as few (if any) would have existed.  Since a relatively small number of Australian troops served in the conflict the chances of a really small town having a Memorial are low.

Memorials specific to that conflict are becoming common, as with these examples from Wagga Wagga ....
...  and Gundagai.
The image of the gunship with troops gathered beneath it ...
... is a frequent element of Vietnam War memorials.

The other thrust of modern Memorials is to honour National Service personnel, who didn't necessarily go into battle.  This example is from Young, NW of Canberra
In both of these cases the memorials tend to appear close to those commemorating the two World Wars, often all located in a Memorial Park.  (Strangely, the World War Memorials are often some fair distance from the memorial to the Boer War which predates both of them.)

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