|Page 3 (The cover contains only a set of pictures of a foundation awardee and page 2 is a directory to the rest of the magazine.
Heading: All in a day's work for the Governor-General
You see the word “patron” associated with the name of the Governor-General on the letterheads of such organisations at The Order of Australia Association and many others.
What are patrons and what do they do? Ironically, even the Shorter Oxford Dictionary is not much help because its definitions relate mostly to the Latin origin of the word, pater meaning father; and petronus which means protector of clients, advocate and defender. In fact, most of the several historic definitions and some of the current ones tend to associate patrons and patronage to commercial enterprises — like pubs and shops. In the 17th and 18th centuries and even today there are patrons of the arts, usually wealthy people who support artists’ work or make substantial gifts to art gallieries or theatres.
The patron of OAA is the Governor-General, Her Excellency Ms Quentin Bryce AC CVO, who is also patron of approximately 320 different organisations and takes a keen interest in their activities. Her patronages cover community, service organisations and charities and her program includes interactions with patronages, on average, several times a week. The Governor-General’s patronage assists organisations to raise their profile through her connection with them.
Ms Bryce has been rather busier than usual recently. In the past few months she has been travelling the world as part of her job, which includes being Commander-in-Chief.
Most recently she represented Australia at various events associated with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. Her engagements included a call on the Prince of Wales followed by a chat with members of Surf Life Saving Australia, who rowed in the rain during the Thames procession. She held an investiture ceremony for Mr Richard Bonynge AC CBE, Mr George Michell AM, Mr William Dalglish OAM and Mr David Mearns OAM (Honorary).
She was at the Jubilee concert to hear Mr G. Gurrumul Yunupingu and Ms Kylie Minogue and she attended the jubilee service in St.Paul’s Cathedral, the reception at Guildhall and had lunch with the British Foreign Minister, Mr William Hague. She attended a reception given by the Queen for Commonwealth Governors-General and, next day, was at lunch for the Queen given by the Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Secretariat.
It all sounds like one long party, which it was meant to be, but its serious side was largely unseen: the informal talks and exchange of views.
Before London, however, it was all work for the Governor-General. Her recent travels began in March, when she undertook a tour of seven island states in the Pacific.
In Tonga she attended the funeral of King George Tupou V.
Next day, in the Republic of Kiribati, in addition to various ceremonies, she visited the Marine Training Centre and the Institute of Technology before laying a wreath at the Betio Coast Watchers’ Memorial. In Tuvalu she visited a primary school, addressed the island’s parliament and visited a hospital.
Island-hopping, next day she was in the Independent State of Samoa where, again, she addressed parliament and met government ministers. Her interests are revealed with a visit to the SENESE school for children with disabilities. She presented a group bravery award when visiting the Australian Pacific Technical College and then hosted two receptions, one for senior Samoan women and another for Australian volunteers in Samoa. Now it’s the weekend but there is no let- up: next stop was Noumea, New Caledonia, where she had lunch with the French High Commissioner, then laid a wreath at the Place Bin Hakeim before a reception given by the President, Mr Harold Martin. The Sunday was filled with more ceremonial meetings and receptions.
Come Monday and the Governor-General is in Nauru, where she meets the President, the Speaker and members of the Australian community as well as prominent Nauruan women. This pattern is repeated for her visit to Pohnpei, in the Federated States of Micronesia and, on the same day, in Honiara, capital of the Solomon Islands.
It is there, on the last day of her official engagements, that the Governor-General addresses the Women’s Leadership Forum in Parliament House. Then, as Patron of the International Women’s Development Agency, she meets representatives of the West AreAre Rokotanikeni Association and launches Women’s Financial Literacy booklets. She meets also members of the Combined Taskforce 635 of the Regional Assistance Mission to the Solomons Islands (RAMSI).
Just a week later the Governor-General is on her way to a state visit to the Philippines, the first such visit by an Australian Governor-General, and it marked the 66th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Australia and the Philippines. The visit involved her in several ceremonial engagements. It took her also to meet beneficiaries of the Conditional Cash Transfer program and AusAid’s BRACE program, which is the Building the Resilience and Awareness of Metro Manila Communities to Natural Disaster and Climate Change Impacts program for an area severely affected by natural disasters. Apart from lunching with senior female Philippine officials, she had time to talk to members of the Australian community and Youth Ambassadors for Development.
Less than a fortnight later, after attending plenty of engagements in Australia, the she was on a flight to Afghanistan to commemorate ANZAC Day with Australian troops, of whom she is Commander-in-Chief. This was her third visit to Australian troops in Afghanistan.
At the Dawn Service at their Tarin Kowt base, she told the assembled troops, “On behalf of all Australians, I thank you for your immeasurable endeavour and commitment. I salute the 32 exemplary soldiers who have died here, and say to their loved ones, we will remember them ... .” She then laid a wreath on which she had handwritten the names of the 32 Australians killed in Afghanistan.
One month later the Governor-General was on her way again, this time to Cyprus on her way to the Diamond Jubilee celebrations in London. In Cyprus, another first visit by a Governor-General.
Australian police have been stationed on the divided island in what has become the longest United Nations peacekeeping mission, dating from 1964. The Governor-General met members of the current AFP contingent on the island. Apart from the obligatory but necesssary state meetings, she also met representatives of the Mediterreanean Institute of Gender Studies; and Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot women who are part of the Cyprus Academic Dialogue and the non-government organisation Hands Across the Divide. She had meetings, too, with Dr Maria Hadjicosti, director of Antiquities at the Cyprus Archaeological Museum; and with the Archbishop of Cyprus. Then it was on to a few hectic days in London. The Governor-General was accompanied on these visits by her husband, Mr Michael Bryce AM AE.
This article is largely based on the Governor-General's public schedules issued by Government House.
Heading: Another patron in the family
is Excellency Mr Michael Bryce AM AE has agreed to be the patron of the Royal Australian Air Force’s No 75 Squadron Association.
The Squadron was formed on March 4, 1942, crested with the magpie and motto “Seek and Strike”. Today the fighter squadron defends Australia from the north, based at RAAF Tindal near Katherine in the Northern Territory and equipped with F/A-18 Hornets.
Mr Bryce said he was proud to accept the honour.
“This distinguished fighter squadron has served Australia at home and abroad for nearly 70 years,” Mr Bryce said.
“No 75 Squadron has played a vital role in protecting Australia’s interests throughout our proud nation’s aviation and war history.
“I am truly honoured the association has invited me to be their patron.”
This year marks the 70th anniversary of No 75 Squadron’s part in the Battle for Australia, defending Australia’s northern approach from Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.
With 25 Kittyhawk fighters and only nine days to prepare, 75 Squadron was on its way north to fight back the Imperial Japanese forces.
“I am, like many Australians, eternally grateful for the brave resistance that 75 Squadron Kittyhawks put up against the Japanese, and equally proud of the role that 75 Squadron plays at Tindal, safeguarding our skies,” Mr Bryce said.
“The unique history of the squadron makes it a symbol of the story of the RAAF and its actions and deeds are legendary in Australia’s wartime diary.”
In 2003, 75 Squadron deployed 14 F/A-18 Hornets and about 250 airmen and airwomen to Iraq for Operation Falconer in support of the US-led Operation Iraqi Freedom.
The following year the squadron received a meritorious unit citation for its achievements in Iraq.
Mr Bryce has strong ties with the Australian Defence Force, having served five years in the Air Training Corps before joining the RAAF Reserves as an Intelligence Officer.
Serving from 1956 to 1970, Mr Bryce also served as honorary Aide-de-Camp to the Governor of Queensland. He was awarded the Air Efficiency Award (AE) in 1970.
Heading: Medical treatment raising ethical questions
Barry Novy is Managing Director of Kliger Wood, Melbourne, so his days could easily be consumed by the commercial and residential property services that define his working life. Yet the 2011 Queen’s Birthday OAM recipient finds it is his enduring affiliation with Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital that consistently provides a real feeling of meaning and achievement. He has been involved with the hospital for more than 25 years on several committees and ultimately at board level and as Chairman of the RCH Foundation Board for eight years.He says, “This association has been one of the most gratifying commitments I could ever be lucky enough to experience.
“I am constantly amazed by the absolute dedication of
everybody at the hospital to the highest level of service, an excellence factor which is both recognised and essential within the hospital, the community and internationally.”
It is his own commitment to the community, in particular his work with a number of children’s charitable organisations, that has been recognised by the Order.
In his current role as Chairman of the Children’s Bioethics Centre’s Development Board, Novy leads a strong team of 20 members whose role is to extend the scope of the centre’s endeavours through developing strategic business partnerships and continuing financial support via fund-raising.
The Development Board has members from the business and legal worlds, health professionals and community members, including Mr Novy’s fellow OAM, Ms Marion Lau. The Patron of the Development Board is a retired Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia, Professor Alistair Nicholson AO.
Despite the challenges of leading such a high-calibre board, it is the work of the Bioethics Centre that excites Novy most.
“In the 140-year history of the Royal Children’s Hospital, treatments and technology have advanced dramatically but the fundamentally tough decisions remain — out of the range of treatment options, which one will best suit the child and the family?” he says.
The Clinical Director of the Children’s Bioethics Centre, Dr Hugo Gold, defines clinical ethics as “helping clinicians resolve difficult questions that arise in complex medical care.”
In order to provide the best care for a child, the Bioethics Centre assists clinicians in assessing the range of available treatment options and asks the — often tricky — question: what would be the right thing? What is the best treatment path for this particular child?
“In the old days,” Dr. Gold recalls, “doctors were expected to make treatment decisions and patients were expected to accept them. These days it is more about patients’ making decisions for themselves based on the information they are given. The role of the clinician is to facilitate people’s arriving at the best decision for themselves.”
Central to the centre’s activity is the case consultation service. When confronted with conflicting views about the continuing treatment and care of a seriously ill child, a patient’s clinician can request a consultation. A multidisciplinary group of between two and 20 health professionals trained in ethical thinking is then swiftly assembled.
The multidisciplinary group, representing medical, nursing, legal, allied health and chaplaincy, meets clinicians to discuss the issues and care-management options available.
Within 24 to 48 hours the centre’s clinical ethicist, Associate Professor Lynn Gillam, collates the response and provides the clin-ician with a summary, followed by a detailed formal report within a week.
Since its inception in 2008, the Bioethics Centre has held more than 80 clinical ethics consultations, implemented changes in clinical practice through improved ethical decision-making and developed evidence-based clinical guidelines and protocols. More than 200 ethics education sessions have been held for hospital staff. The centre has hosted three annual national paediatric bioethics conferences and public forums.
For Mr Novy, knowing that all children and families who come to the Royal Children’s Hospital will receive the best level of care is thanks enough for the work he does.
“The ethics that the centre is dealing with and the process of what it does brings families to a point where they feel fully supported by the hospital. It is, indeed, part of the treatment.”
To learn more about the Children’s Bioethics Centre, visit:
Heading: Clinical ethics issues
Referrals to the Clinical Ethics Service cover a diverse range of issues arising in the clinical setting, including:
End-of-life decision-making, including advanced treatment plans and withdrawal and withholding treatment
Withholding information from children (children’s/families’ rights)
Children’s participation in decision-making
Cultural dissonance/cross- cultural care; interpreters
Predictive genetic testing, including carrier status in minors
Children’s participation in research — competence, opt-out consent, children’s assent to treatment
Allocation of resources
Page 6: Full page advertisement for a Sydney restaurant called the emperor’s garden
Heading: What is ‘old’ when there is a world to explore?
Judith Cottier AM, former Principal of Perth College, the Anglican School for Girls in Mount Lawley, WA, who launched Exotic Places Too, by Mollie Dinham OAM, says the sentiments she expressed at the launching are still relevant.
Where’re you from?” asked the US backpacker of the person next to him on a bus in Bali and, being told Perth, commented, “Perth? I’ve just read a great book written by an old woman who lives in Perth. She has travelled all over the world. I’d just love to go to the places she’s been to, see the things she’s seen.”
Further ruminations followed until Alene finally asked whether the book was Travels to Exotic Places.
“Yeah, that was it,” responded the backpacker. “Do you know this old lady?” Alene said she had been mentioned in the acknowledgments and added that she would never think of Mollie Dinham as “old”.
So how old is “old”? one might ask. To the US backpacker it is any year over 50, for the Travels cover journeys made by Mollie Dinham, confessed traveller and adventure-seeker in the 25 years after she turned 50. To her two daughters growing up, her age did not come into the equation, except that she was not like other mothers. They came to accept that their mother was a “modern-day nomad” whom friends regarded as being a legend in her lifetime for her jet-abouts to places most people had never even heard of, let alone known where they were. They include Ladakh, Uzbekistan, Ethiopia, the Shetlands, Mongolia, Yemen, as well as the more familiar Iraq and Iran, Alaska and Paraguay.
At the launching of the second book, Exotic Places Too, Iudith Cottier AM quoted from the poem “When I am old I shall wear purple”. The poem then lists other pointers, none of which included adventure and travel.
The young have taken senior citizens, grey power, insurance policies, retirement homes and thrown them into the same pot as Autumn Clubs, gentle ocean cruises and grand tours from one comfortable hotel to the next. Booksellers and libraries arrange special sections about health, diet, osteoporosis and such ailments, craftwork and recreational pursuits for the elderly.
Nowhere is there the word “adventure” and, obviously, “adventure travel” is only to be indulged in by the young. This perception is solidified by adventure-travel brochures.
There is nothing in the poem “When I am old I shall wear purple”, reflected Iudith Cottier, that described Mollie Dinham, then in her late seventies. In consequence, she came to the conclusion that the 120 published stories were, in fact, a challenge. They were a challenge to the over-50s to go out and seek adventure!
Books have been written about young people achieving extraordinary feats and, in the hands of the over-50s, these records inspire admiration; but Travels to Exotic Places and Exotic Places Too were two books that said that there was no need for such regret. Age was a state of mind rather than a physical state. The author did not, like many writers, outline what could be done; she went ahead and showed by example that adventurous travel was not the province of the young in age; it was the province of the young in spirit.
It might be the easy solution to package the over-50s into a tidy parcel and chain them to set parameters that make supervision easy. This attitude, says Mollie Dinham, might make life easy for someone younger and for corporations but stifles what makes life worth living for a great many of those reaching retirement — now with the time and money but lacking the confidence to be “young”.
If you pass the medical for travel insurance and the airline you are fit to go, she says, commenting that travel in pairs makes life easier, accommodation cheaper and provides back-up in case of need. She has mainly travelled solo or with adventure groups that have relaxed their age restrictions after viewing her travel CV. Travellers, she says, are ageless; their bond is a spirit of adventure.
Book clubs and libraries would do well to foster this undisclosed or inhibited love of adventure in the over-50s. For book clubs in particular, collections of stories are ideal for the busy person and ageing eyesight: only the 10 to 20 stories for discussion need be read. This can be more meaningful than a book of fiction, for example, which has been skipped through in order to meet the deadline. When it comes to selection for clubs and libraries, books showing over-50s being adventurous need to be promoted, not set aside.
The well-illustrated trilogy Travels to Exotic Places, Exotic Places Too and More Exotic Places can be bought as one package for $50 post-free from Mollie Dinham OAM, 24 Kemp Road, Mount Pleasant WA 6153, (08) 9364 3807.
Page 8: Full page advertisement for Thorn Equipment Finance
Heading: The queen’s style and titles
This article is an edited text of a submission by Sir David Smith KCVO AO, which, for procedural reasons, could not be put to members attending the recent annual general meeting of the association in Darwin.
Sir David served as Official Secretary to five Governors-General from 1972 to 1990. He is the author of Head of State, Macleay Press, Sydney, 2005
I have been a life member of the Order of Australia Association since my appointment to the Order of Australia in 1986.
I am proud of the way in which the Association, since its formation in 1980, has enabled those appointed to the Order to continue to serve the Australian community in so many ways.
It is now proposed to seek tax deductibility status from the Australian Government to enable the Association to expand its activities. To that end members are required to approve a new Memorandum and Articles of Association, including a revised list of objects and purposes.
It is my intention to move a motion at the 2013 annual general meeting that would enable this matter to be considered.
I suggest a motion along the following lines: That, in the first object of the Company, the words “Head of State of Australia” be deleted and the following words inserted in their place, namely, “Queen of Australia and Sovereign Head of the Order of Australia”.
Since its formation the Association has had, as its first object in a list of objects, “To promote loyalty to the Sovereign and to the institution of the Crown, and to foster love of and pride in Australian citizenship.”
In the course of drafting the Association’s new constitutional documents, our legal advisers suggested that our application for tax deductibility, even if it complied with the legal requirements in all other respects, might still fail to receive government approval if our objects contained a reference to the Queen. This legal advice was accepted and all reference to the Queen was removed from the initial draft.
The legal advice represented an unwarranted slur on the integrity of the public servants and the minister of the Crown who would deal with the application for tax deductibility. It also flew in the face of Prime Minister Gillard’s statement to the House of Representatives on 7 February 2012, the Parliament’s first day of sitting this year. In moving an Address of Congratulations to the Queen on reaching her Diamond Jubilee, the Prime Minister spoke of
“our respect and regard for the dedication you have displayed in the service of the Commonwealth and your deep and abiding commitment to Australia and her people.”
The Prime Minister went on to refer to her joining the British Prime Minister last October in announcing the establishment of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Trust to support charitable organisations and projects across the Commonwealth; told the Parliament that her government would contribute $5 million to the Trust; that Australia would be represented by the Governor-General at ceremonial events in London in June; that Parkes Place in Canberra’s Parliamentary Zone would be renamed Queen Elizabeth Terrace; and that there would be other events to commemorate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
To suggest that the Gillard Government could act on the Association’s application for tax deductibility in the manner alleged by our legal advisers beggars belief.
In due course wiser counsels prevailed, the legal advice was rejected, and the Queen was reinstated in our Association’s list of objects.
However, the Queen was to be moved from being mentioned in the first of a list of objects to being mentioned in the last of a list of objects. When it was pointed out that this insult to the Sovereign would be unacceptable to many members of the Association, the Queen was reinstated in the first object.
The draft then stated, as the Association’s first object, “To promote loyalty to the Sovereign as Head of State of Australia.”
During the 1998 Constitutional Convention and the 1999 debate on the republic referendum, one side argued that the Queen was the Sovereign and the Governor-General was the Head of State, while the other side argued that the Queen was both Sovereign and Head of State.
In some quarters the argument still continues and it will undoubtedly arise in any future referendum proposal for Australia to change its system of government to a republic.
Whichever side individual members of the Order of Australia Association might take on this question, it is undoubtedly controversial, divisive and political, and it has no place in the affairs of the Association.
The facts are that the term Head of State is not mentioned in the Australian Constitution; that the Queen does not have the title of Head of State; and that two successive (Coalition government) Attorneys-General have conceded in writing that they and their department have not been able to produce any constitutional or legal document that would confirm that the Queen is Australia’s Head of State.
On the other hand, the Queen has two titles in Australia that are not in dispute and for which there is constitutional and legal documentary evidence. The Sovereign is Queen of Australia by virtue of two Acts passed by the Australian Parliament – the Menzies government’s Royal Style and Titles Act 1953 and the Whitlam government’s Royal Style and Titles Act 1973.
The Queen is also Sovereign Head of the Order of Australia by virtue of Royal Letters Patent which she signed on 14 February 1975 on the advice of Prime Minister Whitlam to create the Order to which we all belong.
It makes little sense to use a title which is hotly disputed and for which there is no documentary evidence in existence, and not to use the Sovereign’s two titles which are indisputable and for which there is abundant documentary evidence provide by the Australian Parliament and by the Queen herself.
Heading: Institute of Molecular bioscience hosts OAA members
Members of the Queensland Branch of the Order of Australia Association were given the opportunity to visit one of Australia’s premier scientific centres, the Institute of Molecular Bioscience at the University of Queensland. The mission of the institute is to decipher the information contained in the genes, proteins and molecules of humans, animals and plants.
Established in 2000, the institute aims to develop pharmaceutical and cellular therapies, technologies and diagnostics to prevent or treat diseases. In addition, through studying both animals and plants, it pursues other opportunities for applying understanding of genetic programming and molecular architecture. This has the capacity to transform and create new industries in biology, information technology, green energy and agriculture.
After two interesting talks and an inspection of some of the institute’s laboratories, members were treated to morning tea. Professor Brandon Wainwright, IMB Director, detailed the institute’s history and outlined the major areas and direction of the institute’s research efforts. Professor Sean Grimmond, who heads the Queensland Centre for Medical Genomics, described how his laboratory is focused on globally surveying genomic information using the latest genome sequencing approaches, and then integrating this data to define the underlying molecular networks controlling biological processes such as cell division and pathological states including pancreatic, ovarian and breast cancer.
The visit was enjoyed by all who attended, including members from Cairns, who happened to be in Brisbane and some who travelled from the Gold Coast. Members appreciated the efforts of both Brandon and Sean in making their presentations suitable for a lay audience. Thanks also to Peter Isdale AM, of the institute’s commercial arm, IMBCom, for his role in arranging the visit.
Heading: Washington’s vice-patron’s dinner to be a ‘fixture’
The Australian Ambassador to the United States, His Excellency the Hon. Kim Beazley AC, honorary Vice-Patron of The Order of Australia Association’s North American Group, and his wife, Susie Annus, hosted his second dinner for the group earlier this year at the Ambassador’s Residence in Washington, DC.
In welcoming guests, he said that he hoped that the annual event had been firmly implanted in the Embassy’s schedule and noted that there was a growing number of senior US officials who were honorary members of the Order.
Ambassador Beazley spoke of the importance of the Order of Australia as a tool for not only recognising the accomplishments of Australians
but also to recognise the commitments which key officials of other countries have made to improving relationships with Australia.
In a follow-up letter to NAG Chairman Gregory Copley AM, the Ambassador noted, “The Order of Australia dinners are rapidly becoming one of the highlights of my year.
“ ...We are beginning to build up a substantial number of awardees here [in North America].
“We must give sufficient time next year for as many as possible of them to turn up [for the dinner].”
Significantly, it was the first public occasion on which Ambassador Beazley had been able to wear his own decoration as a Companion of the Order.
A number of the new US recipients of the Order had to decline participation in the dinner at the last minute, given a hectic schedule of Washington politics but all declared an enthusiastic commitment to participating in events of the association.
These included the new Director of the US Central Intelligence Agency, General David Petraeus, AO (Hon), New Zealand Ambassador the Rt. Hon. Michael Moore, AO (Hon) and the Australian Defence Attaché in Washington, DC, Major-General Timothy McOwan, AO DSC CSM; the former CIA Director, the Hon. Michael (Mike) Hayden AO (Hon); and a former State Department official, the Hon Richard Armitage AC (Hon).
Attending the dinner for the first time was Australia’s first man in space, Dr Paul Scully-Power AM DSM, with his wife, Frannie Scully-Power.
Dr Scully-Power’s achievements have been memorialised at the Australian National Portrait Gallery, where his portrait now stands near the entrance.
NAG Chairman Gregory Copley noted, in his thanks to Ambassador Beazley and Susie Annus, “We have, with The Order of Australia Association in North America, a vehicle which helps cement Australia’s positive image in the minds of our host nations, both through the Australians who have been recognised and through those non-Australian allies whose contributions to bilateral relations can be rewarded ...”. More events are planned for the future.
Heading: War, peace and writing Haiku
Preamble: There is rarely a time when members of the Order of Australia Association do not surprise people with their interests, often far removed from the activity that earned them their honours. Frank A. Lees AM MBE is one such person.
He was made a Member in the Order in 1989 for service to education and to research liaison with industry. However, one of his passions is the disciplined writing of Japanese Haiku poetry. Frank explains in a book of his collected poems, “Haiku is derived from two words — Hai from hachi (eight) and ku (nine), giving the 17 syllables in three lines of five, seven and five each.
“The finest Haiku, in my opinion, are in the subject range of the seasons, the four elements — water, air, fire and earth, plus Nature — trees, flowers, birds and the whole family of flora and fauna. The great masters of the 18th and 19th centuries encapsulated the essence of Haiku in an art of expression within the seventeen syllables, with enigmas of emotion of love and unstated innuendos well concealed …”
In a foreword to Frank Lee’s book, historian Emeritus Professor Geoffrey Blainey AC writes:
Frank Lees went to Japan in 1946, soon after the end of World War II. A very young member of the forces occupying the land of the defeated enemy, he spent 15 months in the village of Hofu. It was surrounded by neat farmlands and close to fishing villages; and its people — he soon realised — felt some of the inner harmony of the landscape.
Initially feeling some uneasiness about living with the wartime enemy in all its millions, he began to relax. Soon he observed the spirit which quietly bonded together the Japanese people in time of peace. In the village, he recalls, he fell in love with “things Japanese” .
Two kindly Japanese families spurred his interest in the poetry known as Haiku, itself a repository of harmony. Eventually in Australia in the 1970s he learned how to obey the strict rules guarding the verses written in Haiku’s distinctive style. As he explained in his author’s note, Haiku is a pithy and disciplined kind of poetry. Each verse usually consists of a mere 17 syllables and usually no punctuation.
You cannot readily write Haiku without observing sky and land, wind and sun. Frank learned how to watch nature and its moods. Even today, when he writes a letter to a friend, he pens on the top corner of the page a few words about that morning’s or afternoon’s weather.
He retained his love of Japanese culture after he left the air force and again settled down in Australia. Each return visit to Japan gave him pleasure, though he did not meet again the families who had taught him so much.
“Hofu was my village
Through winter spring summer autumn Then farewell never to return”
In his garden in suburban Melbourne, Frank and his wife created a corner of Japan, and watched it become the “home to the maple, bamboo, daphne, water, wind and moonlight”. There, the stream of water trickles, making what he calls a ducky sound. Japan was not the only society to fascinate him. His house overlooking the Japanese garden is “Shalford”, named after the English village where he lived while working at the University of Surrey.
Geoffrey Blainey says that the engaging selection of Frank’s Haiku verses are arranged according to the season: “Not all are set in the Japanese countryside. Here is the sea, with echoes of Nelson and the Battle of Trafalgar. … Elsewhere wattle birds and magpies fly by, and black swans are swimming …”
“Nature swims them in pairs. As stately as any white swan.”
Professor Blainey ends his foreword noting, “His verses portray a fragile, ephemeral world but he himself is quietly optimistic. In Borneo as an RAAF electrician with the Mustang aircraft, he experienced the last months of World War II and he also saw the newly bombed ruins of Hiroshima but he has since seen the postwar world flourishing in unpredicted ways. Winter can be harsh, he writes, but from the cold comes spring and summer.”
Heading: Fast-tracked citizenship for defence families
The Government will fast-track Australian citizenship for family members of Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel.
Under proposed changes to the Australian Citizenship Act 2007, family members of ADF personnel will now be able to gain access to the same reduced residence requirement which applies now to ADF members and their children aged under 16 years, enabling them to apply for Australian citizenship after 90 days of service.
The Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Chris Bowen, said, “The Government recognises that families who support ADF members serving Australia should be able to enjoy all the benefits of Australian citizenship while their family members are settling into Australia,” .
The new requirement provides for a more consistent approach and will apply to partners and other family members who have migrated with an ADF member, including children aged over 16 years and dependent elderly parents who had previously to wait four years to apply for citizenship.
“The amendment will help these families access employment opportunities and education assistance, as well as aid them in building a close and continuing relationship to Australia.’
The Minister for Defence Science and Personnel, Warren Snowdon, said the fast-tracked citizenship would be available to both present and future ADF overseas lateral recruits granted a specific visa on or after 1 July 2007.
“This amendment will provide more equitable treatment and greater certainty for ADF lateral recruits and their families, so that all family members can become Australians at the same time,” he said. This amendment would also help Australia to attract personnel to highly specialised roles in the ADF.
The Government has introduced a comprehensive Bill to Parliament clarifying the eligibility for the defence service residence requirement. It is supported by the Opposition.
Heading: Swim for safety and better health
By Dr William John Harvey OAM
Saving lives through educating people can be a most rewarding activity. With so many drowning in the sea, rivers and pools, it is an unfortunate commentary on the lack of attention to this need in all communities,whether in cities or the outback.
As a student at Dubbo High School, from 1940 until 1944, and a self-taught swimmer, I gained all medals and certificates from the NSW Amateur Swimming Association and the Royal Life Saving Society of NSW. As well as taking part in the local swimming club activities, I taught children and adults to swim, including Army and Air Force personnel who were camped in Dubbo, ready to leave for World War II.
The AIF camp was in the area that later became the Western Plains Zoo; the RAAF stores depot was in North Dubbo. Both were within cycling distances.
While a student at the University of Sydney, I was asked by the NSW Amateur Swimming Association to travel, during university vacations, to many parts of NSW to teach people of all ages to swim. Several towns had no pools, so rivers, rivulets and leech-filled small streams were the only places for swimming. At Hay the river rose one night about a metre, the current so swift I needed more than the usual precautions when the students were taught in the river. Gundagai had no pool, so I held lessons in the river near to the rail bridge. Murrumburrah/Harden, Gilgandra, Jerilderie, Culcairn , Albury, Wagga, Narrandera and Cootamundra were among the other towns visited. Some were better served as, of course, were Dubbo, Tamworth and Wellington.
Financed by the NSW Amateur Swimming Association and private donations, I travelled by rail or, where there were no rail lines, by small van. On arrival, I contacted local newspaper offices and/or radio stations to encourage the councils to build swimming centres.
My childhood swimming was in a tributary of the Macquarie River in Dubbo.
Then, in 1936, the council built a 50m Olympic Pool — a favourite cycle- ride destination in the early mornings, lunch hours and evenings.
I am concerned at the loss of lives in private, unfenced pools; in rivers; off beaches and in council pools. Deaths of infants as well as handicapped adults could be avoided if proper precautions were taken. Local councils insist that domestic pool owners have safe fences and gate locks. The Learn to Swim Campaigns were most helpful and were an interesting part of my student life.
At 84, I regard consistent and proficient education in swimming as very important. Other sporting and leisure activities are significant for all ages, as are additional physical and intellectual pursuits beneficial to our physiques and minds.In old age, leisure has stimulating and helpful components that may prolong life, as well as improve health in body and mind.
Swimming is a fine form of health sustenance in every way. I should like to see more people teaching swimming.
Heading: A legend of the noble profession of nursing