The Worst Poem In The Universe

Chris Hoare

2015 - 2018

The Worst Poem In The Universe is a journey through Australia and a response to the idea that it could be regarded as a lucky country. Australian author Donald Horne wrote a book entitled Lucky Country in 1964, it was intended ironically but has since turned in to a phrase that is commonly heard throughout Australia. This work is an exploration into how good luck and bad-luck reveal themselves on the of surface the country.

The title of the project is in reference to a poem entitled ‘Our Future’ written by Gina Rinehart, the wealthiest person in Australia. The poem has been described as the “worst poem in the universe” partly because of the way Gina explicitly rallies for minerals to be dug out the earth at all costs and with as little taxation as possible, but also because the poem lacks the sensibility of poetic prose, reading more like a manifesto. Gina herself could be described as perhaps the luckiest of Australians, since she inherited her father’s (Lang Hancock) mining empire, which included some hefty annual royalties, along side a clean $75 million. Since then she has gone on to benefit hugely from the selling of iron ore to feed China’s exponential boom, to her credit multiplying the value of her fathers business many a fold.

This project in turn then is a response to idea of ‘luck’ and how almost anything can be subject to the grip of good luck/bad-luck. But most pertinently how the word seems to be so applicable to Australia, a country that has enjoyed continued prosperity and holds 18% of the worlds total known mineral resources. To add to this, with a population of 25 million, the country holds all the statistics as the worlds most prolific gambling nation.

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  • Bush fire, Broome.

  • Two weeks before Christmas, Alice Springs.

  • Spending winnings from the pokies, Gold Coast.

  • Listening to Chicago, Gold Coast.

  • Grow your wealth, Townsville.

  • Meditating, Gold Coast.

  • Hotel, Gold Coast.

  • Entering the casino, Perth.

  • Halo, Townsville.

  • Dancing on Darwin.

  • "You should see the view", Cairns.

  • Gold mine, Kalgoorlie.

  • 265 gaming machines, Gold Coast.

  • Game Over, Melbourne.

  • Holding hands in Newtown, Sydney.

  • King of the world, Melbourne.

  • Ukongo, Sydney.

  • Southern Cross, Sydney.

  • Traveller, Alice Springs.

  • Fruit bat, Katherine.