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Up Yours!

“Up yours!”
I said to the doctor,
“I mean
Up yours!”

“If you think
I’m going to lie down,
And let you
Stick your finger
Up my arse,
And wiggle it around
In my rectum,
Then you’ve got
Another thing coming…

I’m only 48,
Fitter than a mallee bull,
My stream’s so strong
I can hit the top wire
Of the 5 line electric fence
At 3 paces,
So long as
The fence
Is turned off…

I’m not scared!
I mean,
I can sit all day
Outside a government building
To save some trees…
And I’ve spent half
My farming life,
With my whole arm
Up cow’s arses…”

But I can remember
The exact spot
In the paddock
I was standing,
When my dad told me
He was having trouble with
His water works,

And the day they told him
He had prostate cancer…

And the nurse in the corridor,
Who was the first one to tell me –
He was terminally ill.

And I can still see him slumped
On the back of the combine,
With most of the life already gone
Out of him,
Two days before he died…

And I’m still bloody angry
At him –
‘Cause 64 was too young
To die,
And if he’d had a check
He might still be alive today…

And if the truth be known –
The thought of getting cancer
Scares me shitless,
And the thought of dying
Scares me witless…

And yet knowing all this,
I still told that poor bastard
Of a male doctor –
“Up yours…!”

It took a lovely woman
On the radio,
Talking about women getting pap smears,
With their legs spread
Wide
In stirrups,
And things
Getting poked up them…

She said,
“No one ever died
From embarrassment,
But plenty of people
Die from cancer!”

“Thank Christ for women”
I said to the doctor,
And muttered about
Women, kids and loved ones,
And being cut short
In my prime,

While I lay down
And let him,

Slip his finger
Up mine.


Listen to With heaven at His Back Door

Tim Barritt. 1999.

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