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All poems are printed with the kind permission of Joy's daughter Janet King

ALARA-THE BEGINNINGS

Some ladies met and said "You know it really is a bore,
To be stuck with kids and washing-up and every kind of chore.
Being wives of amateurs is really not so good
When they are working radio while we're preparing food.

We can't beat 'em, so let's join 'em , get some action of our own.
And a group of us together can do more than one alone."
So they formed a ladies amateur group, and soon the OMs knew
They had competition on the air as ALARA grew and grew.

Now things are very different, as all will soon agree,
And the YL role has changed a lot since ALARA came to be:
So while the YLs work the radio at all the social "dos"
The OMs are baby-sitting while they tend the barbecues.

I LIKE AMATEUR RADIO

I like amateur radio,
I really think it's fine
That I'll still be a "YL"
If I live to ninety-nine

I like amateur radio
And getting on the air,
Making friends around the world
And contacts everywhere.

You can talk to Lapps in Lapland,
Nepalese in Katmandu,
Maylays in Kuala Lumpar,
Or Peruvians in Peru.

You can talk to dukes and dustmen,
Or communicate in Morse,
Experiment with A.T.V.
And RTTY of course.

Put together bits and pieces,
(Though at first the prospect balks!)
A diode here, condenser there,
And - listen to that - it talks!

Experiment with aerials,
It looks real good on paper;
But getting that lot in the air
Is quite another caper!

You can enter in a contest,
Gather points for an award,
Join a DX net or "ragchew"
One thing's sure, you're never bored.

Yes, I like amateur radio,
And all the friendly sounds,
Removed from all the trouble and strife
With which this world abounds.


It's a satisfying hobby,
It will certainly do me;
'Till they write beside my name the words
"Became a silent key".

CONTEST!

"CQ Contest, CQ Contest"
Over every band;
Paper lying everywhere,
Pen clutched in my hand.

"CQ Contest, CQ Contest"
Hunched up in my chair;
My list of members is somewhere here
I wish I knew just where!

There's a strange look on the OM"s face,
(Can't think why that should be!)
He says "How long before the end
Of this insanity??"

"I'm pretty handy, as you know,
To get a meal I"m able,
But I don't know where to put it
'Cos there's no room on the table!"

"Hey Mum" yells son, "Where is my shirt!
I can't find it at all."
"Look among that heap of ironing
In the basket in the hall."

"CQ Contest, CQ Contest"
Passed the fifty mark.
(Better go and feed the chooks
Before it gets too dark!)

"CQ Contest, CQ Contest"
Way into the night.
(Did I bring the washing in?
I can't remember quite!)

"CQ Contest, CQ Contest"
Must be off my head!
Wonder why the lights are out?
Think all have gone to bed!

"CQ Contest, CQ Contest"
Getting Laryngitis!
(Must get a can of fly spray,
Get the mossies 'fore they bite us!")

"CQ Contest, CQ Contest"
Into it once more,
Must be getting writers' cramp!
My fingers are quite sore.

Time's up, the contest's over;
Try and organise the log;
Check the points and add my score up.
(Better go and feed the dog.

Set it all out neatly,
Post off with a stamp or two.
People ask "Why do you do it??"
Well - I really wish I knew!

WHEN THE DX IS RUNNING

When DX is running,
I sit here in my shack
Mike clutched tightly in my hand;
A cushion at my back

Equipment tuned and ready,
Beam all lined up right,
The band is really opening up,
Looks like quite a night!

Unhappy is my youngest son,
Cranky the old man,
Because they know their evening meal
Will come out of a can!

"We're getting thin & weak" , they cry!
Since our cook became a "ham",
"Well if you don't want what's in the tins
There's always bread & jam!"

"I must try for that rare station,
Need it for DXCC!
And if I can get that Award
How happy I will be!"

I haven't washed the windows,
Or vacuumed the floor,
The weeds are so high around the house
We can't see through the door!"

But when the DX is running,
I forget each mundane chore,
As I contact stations round the world
'Til the band is quiet once more.