The SP Bookie
by John Smith Williams
Print Save Follow
Recent poems by John Smith Williams
Make Life Count
A true narrative
>> View all 150
The SP (starting price) bookie was a product of the depression years and later in Australia His lookouts were often known as cockatoos as they screamed if the police turned up
THE S P BOOKY.
It was not so many years ago,
The SP Booky was all the go,
On Saturday arvo he’d take your bet,
Giving starting price odds, that’s all you’d get.
His stand was usually the local pub,
In a back room, was the place he’d love,
A phone or two was all he’d need,
And a couple of runners with a bit of speed.
Sometimes you’d find him down a back lane,
Lookouts posted to protect his game,
Ftom local coppers who got very nosey,
If they caught him things wouldn’t be so rosey.
He’d take your money with a bit of a grin,
You’d hope like crazy, your horse’d come in,
A risky business, punting that way,
If he took all your money, a scarpered away.
He’d take on a bet as low as two bob,
In the days of depression, that was a lot,
There was always a hope for a bit of a win,
Anything extra was a reason to grin.
The days of the SP bookie are long since gone,
As is inevitable time has moved on.
Just as touch of nostalgia, comes to my mind
A glimpse of the past, you’d now never find.