Canberra is the Last City or Another Lost City?

I was quite tired tonight but kept feeling to write a poem. I’ve found myself watching politics on the television. I am in Canberra afterall. Canberra is the capital of Australia. I watched the Prime Minister Julia Gillard hold a two day tax forum and I wondered if new ideas were possible given the business-as-usual mindsets and the major changes coming. Then I heard Q and A (Question and Answer, ABC television) where the public get to ask questions to an expert panel. I loved the Twitter comments streamed at the bottom of the screen, many were very funny and insightful. The down to earth nature of people, unscripted by executives. I love to see and hear people having a say, even if limited to Twitter. Then I saw an Insight Forum where young people were critiquing politics and revealing a deep disillusionment with political parties. When I see the word disillusion I think of dis-illusion, the illusion is falling away. I see that as a good development or indeed insight. My inner feeling was the whole system is creating tipping points in both the financial and ecological areas. Greed is not an energy that is constructive, it is at its root destructive as it favours self interest over best interest, that is why the system is not working. Logically you can see this as imbalance. Moreover, the paradigm and focus on economy disconnects us from the natural world which is the core problem in truth. We are out of touch with the true nature.

My mother questioned me about voting, I told her I can’t see the point as I don’t think the system is healthy, I can’t endorse what I feel is not representative or sustainable in truth. I was trained as an Economist, but I no longer feel this system is workable in today’s world and the strains and weaknesses are evident. In my view there has to be very innovative thinking and feeling to move us forward into a new epoch. I deliberately include feeling here as it links us to emotional intelligence and intuition which are real navigators. Of course I could be wrong, but this is my feeling.

Lastly, I did some research of Walter and Marion Griffin the Chicago architects who won the contest to design Canberra in 1912 and found some creative innovations in their work that reflect real power and balance in the integration of cosmic, natural and physical landscapes. They were visionaries and yet their cosmology as architecture holds profound significance for Canberra and I pondered if Australia could be a focal point of real change for the world. That will happen only if there is real enlightenment on the hill, for that will be the lamp for humanity to illuminate who we all become. There is a certain freedom in Australia and that could liberate some great ideas.

Something to ponder… for fun.


Canberra is the last city,
A cosmology of ideas crossing leylines of inquiry,
Created by the Griffins of higher knowledge,
A pyramid of balance,
Stability circles the cross,
As religion and trade are decoupled for good,
From representative democracy.

The land axis,
Is the axis power,
That needs no defence,
Connecting Mount Ainslie, the War Memorial,
Anzac Parade, Capital Hill to Bimberi Peak,
For the Brindabella ranges are the umbrella,
Of natural alliances enhancing hidden peaks,
Forming geometric symbols of inherent symmetry,
A Feng shui of wind-water basins of positive energy,
As the architecture of Canberra was never just a structure,
an edifice or scaffolding,
it was designed to maximize the peak of wisdom,
balance sacred geometry in real meanings rather than rhetoric,
Where politics is the vesica of intersecting circles,
Finding contrasts produce creative forces of inspiration,
That are never in opposition to block supply,
As they find solutions in the Agora of comm-unity,
The Great Hall of the people echoing with the sounds
of universal freedom of speech.

There are 5 sacred mountains,
Black Mountain, Mount Ainslie, Mugga Mugga, Mount Pleasant and City Hill,
A geomancy where consciousness meets the spirit of the earth,
A new sustainability without economic rations,
Empowering harmony over economy,
As Gross National Happiness replaces GDP
as the real measure of growth.

As above so below,
For as you change,
Your world changes,
You cannot force, influence or coerce,
For real democracy shares power equally,
Seeks consensus sincerely,
Finds the middle ground,
Embraces differences,
For unity of the commons,
Makes common sense in the alternating current of the global financial crisis,
Replacing energy with enlightenment,
Pretence replaced by authenticity,
As leaders learn to serve the constituency,
As themselves,
For this is the new humility of a new common epoch.

Walter Burley Griffin built Canberra as a theatre,
Not for role plays and performances at Question Time,
But staging a common cultural identity without masks,
Sculpting friendliness, honesty, humour and community,
As the only levy of an Australia girt by sea,
Where the people are footloose and fancy free,
For this is the magnet that attracts the world to real happiness,
Not extracting natural minerals of ancient crystalline structures,
Holding patterns of energy of his-story locked into a carbon footprint,
For this country is a sacred site of boundless spiritual value,
Discarded by the cold hard face called

Squaring the circle appears as an impossible staircase,
For heaven and earth is an Axis Mundi,
A meeting place where north, south, east and west can join,
Where the intangible and material coexist,
Where one sees the impossible as possible,
The other can only see the material as fully funded,
The other silently knows there are no limits to inner growth,
Contrasted by the other limited by what they don’t know,
In space and time.

Canberra is a garden city,
A Floriade of colour,
A bouquet of promise,
As the palette’s of parks flourish for a healthy population,
A theatre of balance, harmony and community,
As peace parks replace car parks,
As we recycle waste into a productive capital,
For zero emissions,
Are the zero point awaiting real change,
As the new commission of the future
Is the free energy of self sufficiency.

The politics of opposition and exclusivity are moving to extinction,
As the elite have fallen from grace,
And life has become a rat race,
Political donations purchase influence not charity,
A vote is not a voice,
Representation seeks special interests,
As political action committees become campaigns for public action,
To Get Up,
Campaigning for higher ethics decoupled from greed,
To plant seeds in fertile soils of fair exchange,
Rather than genetically modified seeds built in obsolescence,
As seasons change the real yields,
And poles shift for real,
The world is in major transition.

Thinking must become free radicals,
That feel for a future reality,
Where lost cities become solid city States,
Designed as an equilateral triangle of balance,
For equilibrium is the right angle,
That always settles at the centre,
For this is the Great Central Sun,
Of a golden age.

Leave a Reply

Mohandas Gandhi

“Only as high as I reach can I grow, only as far as I seek can I go, only as deep as I look can I see, only as much as I dream can I be.”