melbourne cup edition

A poem contributed by Erica Jolly:

Provoked by the Spring Racing Carnival

Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen
they’re just leaving the saddling paddock
ready to make their way to the starting gates
for the beginning of this year’s special race –
the 2005 Senate Handicap.

It’s perfect weather – not a cloud in the sky –
ASIO is first on to the track, he’s in the box seat
carrying the lightest weight.

Shoot-to-Kill, a toey young two year old
is being ridden by an apprentice jockey who
we fear might not be strong enough
to stop him from bolting.

Sedition, an aged solid grey gelding
has a jockey on board who has been
up before the stewards on many occasions
for his bustling tactics that have caused
more than one horse and rider to fall –
he wears the colours of the Attorney General.

Pre-emptive Detention – sorry ladies and gentlemen –
Preventive Detention carries the hopes of his
foreign owners who have brought him
‘down under’ to win this race.

There’s Habeas Corpus looking his usual self
but he’s been drawn so wide his trainer fears
he’ll have difficulty making up ground.

If you’re looking for a roughie – ladies and gentlemen –
the odds on Freedom-of-Speech drifted from
200:1 to 500:1 just before the race was called.

We’ve just been notified – ladies and gentlemen –
that the stewards have asked the owners of
Judicial Independence to explain why
he has been scratched at this late stage.

Now here comes the horse we’ve been waiting for.
Howard’s Revenge is prancing, tossing his head,
perfectly prepared, he appears to see himself
the winner even before the race has begun.

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