Canberra is our capital, deliberately designed,
So a rather artificial place, as visitors will find.
Melbourne was once our capital, but Sydney grew much bigger,
So which would be the capital? They quarreled, as you might figure.
So a brand new city was designed, midway between the two,
Not in any particular state, and in open country too.
Walter Burley Griffin was the chosen architect,
He could decide the layout and what buildings to erect.
His was a very grandiose plan, but funds were in short supply,
So his 'ideal city' was whittled-down, and he kept asking why.
In 1920 he resigned, disappointed and defeated,
Before the City of Canberra had even been completed.
So Canberra's on a smaller scale than he anticipated,
For the bureaucrats had stymied him and the vision he'd created.
But, even so, the city's lake bears his illustrious name,
And the days have gone for idle thoughts of apportioning any blame.
In the centre of Lake Burley Griffin, a water-spout arises
In an arc of sunlit water! One of life's great surprises!
But the original of this could be seen in Switzerland,
Where snow-capped mountains reached the sky, looking gloriously grand.
In the centre of Lake Geneva was the famous Jet de 'L'eau,
As any citizen of that place is very sure to know.
The Diplomats worked long and hard to have permission granted
To copy the famous Water Jet, where Canberra was planted.
So now there are two fountains, but they're very far apart,
But both of them have proved themselves eye-catching works of art.
More architectural meanderings here: