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Rural Doctors celebrated in verse | Poem By Emily Tugwell

A quintessential Australian sunset in the outback.

The Medical Women’s Society of ACT & Region give a couple of Bursaries each year to assist Female Medical Students undertaking an elective. The recipients recently told us of their experiences, and one rounded off her report with an entertaining rendition of the following poem written for the occasion …

I suggest you read it aloud!

Shared by
Dr Brenda Masters

MWS ACT & Region

Doctors of the Rural Towns – in the style of Clancy of the Overflow

(and with apologies to Banjo Paterson)

By Emily Tugwell

In a practice in Narooma,

out in Goulburn or in Cooma,

or up further north in Queensland in the dusty Darling Downs,

there are people with a mission

to hold true to their conviction

of promoting peoples’ welfare: doctors of the rural towns.

Though they’re limited in options,

they make do with their concoctions

listening to every patient with each minute that they can.

Though the distance means deferral

of the warranted referral,

they will sit beside their patients and together form a plan.

Well acquainted with each history

helps unravelling the mystery

of the patient’s health condition and the things that can be done,

for they know their patient’s household

and can figure out their headcold

came from Great Aunt Moira’s butcher’s neighbour’s sister’s nephew’s son.

Though the job is too neglected

it’s a posting well respected

by the people of the township who will open wide their arms.

And it’s something rather stunning

to watch herds of cattle running

through a glowing field at sunset on a Riverina farm.

I’d much rather the position

of a rural town physician,

than to spend my time in Sydney where the patients come and go.

Like to live among fraternity

than with all the new modernity;

I would rather be out whoop whoop, serving patients that I know.




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