Footscray, Our Playground

By Leonie, 78. Port Fairy, VIC                             

Empty factories and the rail lines promised not to tell

As we explored the inner sanctum of that steel and iron playground

Palm trees lined the railway, growing low with fronds that formed a veil

Where we could hide with bikes and all, the two of us not likely to be found

We rode the streets of Footscray on Saturdays and holidays as well

And sometimes on a Sunday after Mass we could explore that holy ground

The fruit shop by the railway was filled with crates of fruit and veg for sale

More were stacked outside by Footscray’s favourite son, hero of the town

Or tossed aboard the pick up truck and delivered to the customer at home

That was Teddy Whitten with muscles on his back all rippling in the round

His biceps bulged like footballs as he hoisted bags of spuds with ease

Like there was nothing packed inside but pillows filled with down

And we would chase that truck at speed on wobbly wheels sucking in the breeze

And he would wave and laugh at us until that old grey truck turned out of bounds

Photo: Map of Footscray, 1951

5 1 vote
Article Rating

Leave a Reply

1 Comment
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Margaret McCaffrey
1 year ago