elegantly dressed depression

As the old New Yorker cartoon goes: “I didn’t like to tell her about the Depression – it would only make her worry.” This picture of Truman Capote was taken by the great Arnold, not Alfred E., Newman.

(Just look how beautiful it is…)

And now, a word from Les Murray:

The Rollover

Some of us primary producers, us farmers and authors
are going round to watch them evict a banker.
It’ll be sad. I hate it when the toddlers and wives
are out beside the fence, crying, and the big kids
wear that thousand-yard stare common in all refugees.
Seeing home desecrated as you lose it can do that to you.

There’s the ute piled high with clothes and old debentures.
There’s the faithful VDU, shot dead, still on its lead.
This fellow’s dad and grandad were bankers before him, they sweated
through the old hard inspections, had years of brimming foreclosure,
but here it all ends. He’d lent three quarters and only
asked for a short extension. Six months. But you have to

line the drawer somewhere. You have to be kind to be cruel.
It’s Sydney or the cash these times. Who buys the Legend of the Bank
any more? The laconic teller, the salt-of-the-earth bank accountant
it’s all an Owned Boys story. Now they reckon he’s grabbed a gun
and an old coin sieve and holed up in the vault, screaming
about his years of work, his identity. Queer talk from a bank-johnny!

We’re catching flak too, from a small mob of his mates,
inbred under-manager types, here to back him up. Troublemakers,
land-despoiling white trash. It’ll do them no good. Their turn
is coming. They’ll be rationalised themselves, made adapt
to a multinational society. There’s no room in that for privileged
traditional ways of life. No land rights for bankers.

(Subhuman Redneck Poems. God I love that title. It’s a great book, too, as you can see.)

(Just don’t mention the £111.4 million.)

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