I Remember Kirribilli

All lyrics written and copyrighted by Casey Bennetto, 2004.
Annotations written by Loki Carbis, 2009; revised in 2014.
The assistance and advice of Casey Bennetto in the creation of these annotations is gratefully acknowledged.

This page is intended for informational purposes only.


Keating: Canberra’s never lonelier or colder
Keating challenged Hawke for the leadership on June 3, 1991 – he lost, with 44 votes to Hawke’s 66.Than when you feel the heartbreak of defeat
You’ll never find a sympathetic shoulder
On any bureaucratic street
So when I must forgive or be forgiven
When all my best-laid plans have gone astray
Lake Burley Griffin is an artificial lake in Canberra created by and named for Walter Burley Griffin, the designer of Canberra. I head down to the shores of Burley Griffin
And try to wash the pain away

In wintertime, the water cuts you chilly
Walter dug it oh so deep
Kirribilli House is an official residence of the Prime Minister in Sydney, located bayside in the suburb of the same name. And I remember Kirribilli
The promise that he did not keep

He looked me in the eye across the table
Hawke and Keating made a private agreement in 1988 that Hawke would yield the leadership of the ALP (and thus, the Prime Ministership) to Keating after the 1990 election, but then reneged on the deal. He looked at me and swore he’d step aside
I gave him my support and kept him stable
He looked me in the eye and lied
At the Christmas 1991 Press Dinner, Keating described himself as the Placido Domingo of Australian politics: “sometimes great, and sometimes not great, but always good.”I dreamed that I was Placido Domingo
Ready for the spotlight and applause
Ernie Dingo is a sometimes controversial celebrity of Aboriginal descent, best know for having hosted travel and lifestyle show “The Great Outdoors” since 1993.But maybe I’ll end up like Ernie Dingo
And vanish in ‘The Great Outdoors’.

In wintertime, the water cuts you chilly,
The Lady of the Lake famously gave King Arthur the sword Excalibur, signifying by divine right that he should be king. However, it should be recalled that strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government, supreme executive power deriving instead from a mandate from the masses.And I swear I see a lady with a blade
And I remember Kirribilli
The promise that a friend once made

I want to rule, I want to lead, I know just what the people need
I thought I had it guaranteed, but then
After Keating’s failed first challenge for the leadership, Hawke removed his portfolio as Treasurer, and Keating spent the next several months as a backbencher.He threw me down in the stenches of the dank back benches,
And I never want to go back there again! Again!

Time again for daring and defiance
Time to charge the throne and take the crown
And I won’t need no iron-clad alliance
‘Old Silver’ was Keating’s private nickname for Hawke.To go for gold and bring Old Silver down…

“I’m gonna bring him down”

In wintertime, the water cuts you chilly
It purifies my soul anew
“yes it does people!”
And I, I remember Kirribilli
And I know now what I have to do,
I know now what I have to do.

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