Category Archives: ER Poetry

ER Poetry

Four Little Hobbits – Respise

One of the others stayed under the covers watching the rain as it ran down the pane
Of this riding in bad weather, He never did treasure;
His two wheeled mounts, of which there are more than can count
He uses for leisure, they are a thing of great pleasure

The silvery Subaru is the transport today
With heater, a roof, wipers and screen;
An engine with turbo aghast if you’re green.
But it certainly isn’t the second best way …..

Four Little Hobbits

Four Little Hobbits went out one day
Down through Lane Cove and far away
The rain did fall and all got wet
It’ll happen tonight again I bet

One Hairy Hobbit didn’t feel the love
Got to Naremburn and pulled the plug
So just three of us at Cava did shiver
Just about as wet as in the Lane Cove River.

Poem for a wet day

Six soggy souls on the OTP,
Pink said she’d catch the train – ‘NO’ said DT.

Tandem carving through puddles, we take extra care.
Eyes sting with rain through the hair.

Descending fast, but climbing real slow,
A tandem’s rhythm has its own flow.

Blue’s glasses bespangled, he peers through the haze.
Clothes soaked through, too wet for Café’s

Gear hung under my desk on my cable tray
Hope it dries somewhat before the end of the day.

Pink (and Blue)


Originally by A.B. “Banjo” Paterson

There was movement in the peleton, for the word had passed around
That the steed of Eddy Merckx had got away,
And had joined the wild Mountain Bikes – it was worth a thousand pound,
So all the cracks had gathered to the fray.
All the tried and noted riders from the Pelotons near and far
Had mustered at the homestead overnight,
For cyclists love hard riding where the wild Mountain Bikes are,
And the stockbike snuffs the climb with delight.
There was Finchi, who made his pile when Cadel won the cup,
The old man with his hair as white as snow;
But few could ride beside him when his blood was fairly up –
He would go wherever bike and man could go.
And Clutters of Canoon came down to lend a hand,
No better rider ever cleated in;
For never a bike could throw him while the skewers threads would stand,
He learnt to ride over Stromlo way.

There was SatNav on his single speed, calm and collected,
with wit as dry as dry.
There was Flash, all sort of hairy,
and Norman, no rider had quite the staying power over the long and windy.
Young Drastic came along, to keep the group in check,
lest any should make some smart remark.

And one was there, a stripling on a small and scratched frame,
It was something like a roadbike undersized,
With a touch of Raleigh – three parts SWorks at least –
And such as are by mountain bikers prized.
It was hard and tough and wiry – just the sort that won’t say die –
There was courage in its quick and lively sprocket;
And it bore the badge of gameness in his bright and fiery gleam,
And the proud and lofty carriage of its rider.

But still so slight and weedy, one would doubt its power to stay,
And the old man said, “That bike will never do
For a long a tiring sprint – girl, you’d better stop away,
Those hills are far too rough for such as you.”
So she waited sad and wistful – only PD stood her friend –
“I think we ought to let her come,” he said;
“I warrant she’ll be with us when she’s wanted at the end,
For both her steed and she are Collaroy bred.

“She hails from Snowy River, up by Kosciusko’s side,
Where the hills are twice as steep and twice as rough,
Where a bikes wheels strike firelight from the flint stones every peddle stroke,
The woman that holds her own is good enough.
And the Snowy River riders on the mountains make their home,
Where the river runs those giant hills between;
I have seen full many mountain biker since I first commenced to roam,
But nowhere yet such rider have I seen.”

So she went – they found the steeds by the big mimosa clump, (just South of the Bridge) –
They raced away towards the mountain’s brow,
And the old man gave his orders, “Boys, go at them from the jump,
No use to try for fancy riding now.
And, Drastic, you must wheel them, try and wheel them to the right.
Ride boldly, boy, and never fear the spills,
For never yet was rider that could keep the steeds in sight,
If once they gain the shelter of the autobus.”

So Drastic rode to wheel them – he was racing off the front
Where the best and boldest riders take their place,
And he raced his steed past them, and he made the ranges ring
With the sound of his whoop, as he met them face to face.
Then they halted for a moment, while he swung the dreaded chain whip,
But they saw their well-loved mountain full in view,
And they charged beneath the whip with a sharp and sudden dash,
And off into the mountain scrub they flew.

Then fast the riders followed, where the gorges deep and black
Resounded to the thunder of their tyres,
And the chainwhips woke the echoes, and they fiercely answered back
From cliffs and crags that beetled overhead.
And upward, ever upward, the wild steeds held their way,
Where mountain ash and kurrajong grew wide;
And the old man muttered fiercely, “We may bid the steeds good day,
No man can hold them down the other side.”

When they reached the mountain’s summit, even Drastic took a pull,
It well might make the boldest hold their breath,
The wild hop scrub grew thickly, and the hidden ground was full
Of pot holes, and any slip was death.
But the woman from Snowy River let her little steed have his head,
And she swung her multi-coloured socks around and gave a cheer,
And she raced it down the mountain like a torrent down its bed,
While the others stood and watched in very fear.

She sent the flint stones flying, but her steed kept its traction,
She cleared the fallen timber and tree roots in her stride,
And the woman from Snowy River never shifted in her saddle –
It was grand to see that mountain cyclist ride.
Through the stringybarks and saplings, on the rough and broken ground,
Down the hillside at a racing pace she went;
And she never drew the brakes till she landed safe and sound,
At the bottom of that terrible descent.

She was right among the wild steeds as they climbed the further hill,
And the watchers on the mountain standing mute,
Saw her ply the chain whip fiercely, she was right among them still,
As she raced across the clearing in pursuit.
Then they lost her for a moment, where two mountain gullies met
In the ranges, but a final glimpse reveals
On a dim and distant hillside the wild steeds racing yet,
With the woman from Snowy River at their heels.

And she ran them single-handed till their frames were white with lactic acid.
She followed like a bloodhound on their track,
Till they halted cowed and beaten, then she turned their heads for home,
And alone and unassisted brought them back.
But her hardy mountain bike could scarcely rotate the crank,
It was blood from headset to bottom bracket from the cleat;
But its pluck was still undaunted, and its courage fiery hot,
For never yet was mountain bike a cur.

And down by Kosciusko, where the pine-clad ridges raise
Their torn and rugged battlements on high,
Where the air is clear as crystal, and the white stars fairly blaze
At midnight in the cold and frosty sky,
And where around The Overflow the reed beds sweep and sway
To the breezes, and the rolling plains are wide,
The woman from Snowy River is a household word today,
And the Easy RIders tell the story of her ride.
“The Man from Snowy River” originally published in –
The Bulletin, 26 April 1890.

Backdoor Ride Report 5/6

In the darkness and the rain they waited,
Fingers crossed and breath a-bated,
Alas Van Diemen never did appear,
As if the conditions where something to fear.

Stealthy and Flash continued their affair,
Matching bags, hats and in years to come, hair?
I ponder if Flash is actually Stealth in a future sense,
The possibilities of the space-time continuum are immense.

C.Hippo’s Jesus slippers continue to brave the weather,
As CFO they have been banished from my consciousness forever,
Although his commitment to the cause is to be respected,
His hairy big toe leaves me a little dejected.

SatNav rolled in with all his friends in tow,
Setting the pace until a certain roundabout, where he slows,
Phantom’s rear lights hovered in the distance yonder,
Mesmerised by their beauty I was almost clipped by a Honda.

Chilled and sodden was this group of six,
Yet showers await, providing a quick fix,
If it wasn’t already clear, let us declare it henceforth
These six are true hard men (and women) of the North.

Dora’s 3Ps Report

My alarm goes off, it’s the morning of 3 Peaky
I’m nervous, jumpy, my voice is a little squeaky

If I’m  a website, then I’m ‘
My prep has been scratchy, infrequent, training sessions far too few

I’m feeling a little light headed, out of touch
A quick scan of my roomies reveals much:

Admin is chatty but saying nuthin
DtB is focused, prepared and on the button

Philby is packed and ready with the dispensary
Jenna is calm, centred, relaxed – her mind clear and free

“Oh, God” methinks “if you do exist – help me please”
“You see, I’m having a little trouble with these dodgy knees”

Hmmm, better rely on what I control …
I pack my kit with two Voltaren and two Panadol

Toast, tea, one last nervous poo then down to the start line
The sky looks clear, the day promising to be fine

With hundreds now arriving the adrenaline really starts to pump
The crowd builds, self-sorts into various waves, ready for the jump

The first descent is looooong – lost lights of red & white litter the roadway
I focus on Drastic’s descending tips, look through the line and lean in – don’t sway

It’s cool, I’m shivering, and the 5.2’s new brake pads are not yet properly seated
I finally hit the bottom, shivering violently, all reserves of body heat totally depleted

On the flat, pedalling evenly, it’s time to warm up and decide on the game plan
It’s simple, one milestone at a time, take it very easy and ride as far as I can

So I settle into a careful rhythm, comfortably within my limits I’m Harrietville bound
Along comes a speedy train to which I attach my wagon, my heart starts to pound

Blue is in the same pack but prudently peels off for a comfort stop
At Harrietville I stop for water, Hydralite refill and a Voltaren drop

Now’s it back in the saddle with a singular new objective, make it to Dinner Plains
All good for now, feeling fairly fresh, with minimal knee aches or pains

Tawonga. That’s a hill. Then Mt Hotham. What a climb – a gift that keeps on giving
By the time I get to DP I’m hurting.  I feel more like dying, less like living

Its hot now, and I’ve been in the saddle for 5 hours plus
But I daren’t stop too long, quick feed, wee, bag drop, water, another Voltaren, no fuss

Back in the saddle I feel good again enjoying the undulations and changing scenery
I’ve got a good pattern going, spotting other riders, not chasing but maintaining the distance between them and me

The pain is manageable, speed is poor but maintainable, I’m feeling OK as Omeo approaches.
I bypass the water stop and push on through finding camaraderie with other slow coaches

The long weaving run into Anglers Rest is a blast
Slightly descending with turn upon turn, very fast

I arrive at Anglers and think to myself “Sh#t, I might be able to do this”
I reach for my medicine kit, faceslap “OMG, you’re taking the piss”

I’m out of Voltaren and the others have all worn off now
Grimly I opt for the Panadol determined to plough on somehow

I set off and ride out for the back of Falls thinking ”How bad can this hill be really be, to be fair?”
Turning WTF corner I look up, the hill is the winner, stragglers walking or stopped everywhere

The Panadol is doing nothing, the hill is 9% and my knees are screaming
I’m panicking, decide to a walk a bit, of the finish line I’m no longer dreaming

I’m limping badly, and fella stops “You all right mate”
“Knees buggered” I say, but I swear this guy was sent by Fate

“Have this” he says and passes a tiny bottle titled ‘Medi Rub’ on the outside
“Slap it on all over your knees and you’ll be able to ride”

Well call it a placebo or whatever it was enough to do the trick and pass the test
Just enough that I could get back on, grit my teeth and grind for Angler’s Rest

I struggled in to the checkpoint and stopped, almost fell off my bike – man it hurts
I toddle up the medic station and put my best case forward to the nurse

“What can you give me for pain” I says fluttering my eyelids, full of hope
“Hmm not much” she says “No, nothing, nope”

“I’m half an hour ahead of the Rouge, I reckon I can finish” I say
“Anything will do, just to take the edge off, don’t let it end this way”

“All right, that’s the spirit” she says “I’ll see what I can do”
Rifling through her handbag she finds one Panadol, now two

Elated I scoff them and jump back on my bike determined to get Falls Creek
By now its 10 plus hours on the bike but feeling more like a week

Slowly the forest diminishes as and the trees give way to snowline scrub, the hill flattens out
A small passing shower, the sun reappears making a rainbow “It’s a sign” I hear my inner voice shout

I’m cranking along slowly, not sure if I’m inside time as I pedal round the lakeside home
Another guy passes and answers my inquiry “It’s 7.45 pm” he says checking the screen of his phone

Down into Falls and I see a steward “Almost there” she says, now I can hear the crowd
Round the corner the finish line appears and damned if I’m not proud

12 hours 50 mins on the clock as the sun sets over the hill for the night
There is Stealthy and SatNav, grinning back at me, I must have been a sight

The last one home of thirty ERs time now for a hot shower, a few laughs and a cold beer
For this day I was the winner having conquered three hills, some pain and a little fear

Flight of the MAMIL

Padda. Padda padda padda. The possums tap out their pre-dawn marsupial rhythm, moving lithely across the terracotta tiles.

It’s still dark. I know this without opening my eyes. Other senses engage and come online. Sense of breath. Sense of self. My quads twitch and feel strong. I’m riding today.

Arising quietly I move with purpose. The sequence is known, a well-worn groove. Toast, tea, toilet, teeth, knicks, baselayer, shirt, socks, cap, water bottle, backpack, helmet, gloves – finally, shoes.

I close the door quietly behind and step out. Meg is there. Waiting, patient, ready. I know she doesn’t need it but I’ve got time and the ceremony is comforting. A wipe and twenty five drops of fresh lube. 110 PSI back and front. Rear light on, flashing.

A small part of my consciousness autocalculates the relative position of the red and yellow snake and then the optimal point of interception.

Meg’s bottom bracket creaks gently as I slowly pedal along Shepherd. I guide her around in a smooth arc into Tindale. I’m up out of the saddle and over the top of the 46 x 17 gearing. Maybe I’m ready to drop to 16. Maybe not. Sleeveless, it’s cool and I shiver slightly.

I reach the top of the hill as the first of my Egg and Tomato brothers arrive. Soon we have a quorum, then a throng, now a mob. Critical mass is reached, wry smiles and witticisms exchanged. The most appropriate point of attachment to the peleton selected.

And then we’re off, under a rising sun, a crisp Spring breeze at our backs. My core temperature rises and the endorphins start to flow. Spikes of adrenalin as obstacles are avoided, intersections negotiated, polite distances maintained.

Meg shies a little as we hit an unseen ridge. I overcompensate and grip too tightly before the resultant fatigue reminds me that I should trust her. Relax into to it. Go with the bumps and curves. Let her have her head a little. I’m rewarded with increasing smoothness and an eventual oneness of being.

On this impossible machine, weightless, I’m flying.

Ode to the Muggle

They sniffle, whine, whinge and complain
Shuffle and sigh as they file aboard the train

Weary and defeated, unfulfilled and depleted
They stare aimlessly at nothing, bored, inane

These poor impoverished souls
Trekking home to hovels and holes

They know not the joy of the impossible machine
That cranks, turns, brakes, climbs and rolls

Artarmon station, finally my escape is made
The Barry, for my steed, I would gladly trade

‘Tis true, The Muggles’ plight is bleak and desperate
A sedentary state from which they will not be swayed

Fiftieth Birthday

There once was an Easy Rider named Half
Who thought he was terribly tough
But as said his bonne femme, Veronique
(Tres Francaise et petitie)
“Hard Man – that’s a bit of a laugh.”

His birthday it was – he was fifty
Razor poised to shave, he felt not so nifty
“Oh my dear mother” he did mutter
“That’s worse than a fluffer”
And called to Veronique: “Can you fix me?”

“I am here in the buff,
“I have a knot in my calf,
“It feels all floppy and weak.
“Might you come and rub it my sweet
“While I have a snooze in the bath?”

“Not a problem mon Half,
I won’t be too rough”
Murmured the sweet Veronique.
Who deftly took the razor – and his Antique
And sliced the latter in half.

“Voila! C’est au revoir a sa Saucisse! *
At last we have peace”
Cried triumphant Madame Demi:
“For Half – The second best way
“Et pour moi – A blessed relief.”

Old Spice

A Birthday Ballad


In the dark times, the world was harsh, strewn with grief & all knew naught but despair.

Then out the north a rider appeared. Large of arse, with a song in his heart and a bandana to tie back his hair.

On a mission he came, to heal the sick and the lame. A prophet, spreading the word – the gospel of steel and wool.

Throwing open the temples of the carbonites and freeing them from their lycra-clad shame.

Now a new cult spreads across the land, as Disciples answer his call and join his merry band.

Warrior Poets all, true of heart, strong of leg, firm of hand.

On the daily crusade they go forth, with the Spiritual Leader in their midst, ministering the pastoral care each requires.

A bawdy joke here, a sly remark there, words of encouragement for another, quick of wit and with wry observations on kit and frames and tires.

His knowledge of the arcane and mystical arts is deep and profound.

Part bard, part minstrel – with keyboard, guitar and voice he makes beautiful sound.

His name is Bullet, he is 50 today and to know him we are proud.