The Kangaroo Hat

So I thought I’d just quickly post this poem. Last year it got me 3rd prize in the Book Day competition at Aberystwyth and although it hasn’t been published I am not certain I can use it for anything but a collection. So enjoy!

The Kangaroo Hat

Once I would have jumped and eaten and loved,

Now I sit.

Dust gathers and sunlight allows motes to gather.

They come with cloths and wipe me down

Brim and top.

Plain and black

No crocodile skin or corks

But plain kangaroo,

Made for weather and for work,

I will shield my wearer from all.


The shop opens and people come.

One stops, lifts me and tries me.

I am brought.

How lucky am I?


I travel to a farm;

Sheep and horses, dust and dirt.

A good place to work.

But no, in a box,

Wrapped and labelled.

Sent away.


On airplanes and boats, the box travels with me inside.

I am battered and bruised.

The box is torn

Until I arrive

A doorbell is rung and people exclaim.

I am placed atop a table.

A knife is taken to my casing.

My shield is no more

I sit naked and in black splendour.

This is not the place I left.


No dust and no dirt.

Mud here is sticky and cloying.

Water falls in incessant streams.

I am on the other side of the world

But wait! I am tried on.


I transform my wearer

From husband and father, to farmer and workman.

I am taken outside.

I work, I shield.

I see my purpose.

In fields and paddocks I spy sheep.

No horses, but a farm.

I use myself to spare my wearer rain and shine.

Soon we are one.

As he moves so do I.

I am a hat, and I have purpose.


A long way from home yet I do the same job.

In time I am worn.

Old and tired,

But my wearer takes care of me, he shields me.

Wax and stitches all used

Until I sit astride his head

Once more a hat,

No longer what I was but

Still able to work.

Stains mar my surface

But I am loved

A gift from son to father.

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