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Stewie Mudcat Australia/NZ Songbook (992* d) RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia 11 Oct 20


Wongawilli's reworking of a Lawson - a good'un:

SONG OF THE BULLOCK DRIVER
(Henry Lawson)

Far back in the days when the blacks used to ramble
In long single file 'neath the evergreen tree
The wool teams in season came down from Coonamble
And journeyed for weeks on their way to the sea
With mates who have gone to the great Never-Never
And mates whom I've not seen for many a day
I camped on the banks of the Cudgegong River
And yarned at the fire by the old bullock-dray

We rose with the dawn, were it ever so chilly
When yokes and tarpaulins were covered with frost
And toasted the bacon and boiled the black billy
Where high on the campfire the branches were tossed
On flats where the air was suggestive of 'possums
And homesteads and fences were hinting of change
We saw the faint glimmer of appletree blossoms
And far in the distance the blue of the range

And here in the rain, there was small use in flogging
The poor, tortured bullocks that tugged at the load
When down to the axles the wagons were bogging
And traffic was making a marsh of the road
Then slowly we crawled by the trees that kept tally
Of miles that were passed on the long journey down.
We saw the wild beauty of Capertee Valley
As slowly we rounded the base of the Crown

Twas hard on the beasts on the terrible pinches
Where two teams of bullocks were yoked to a load
And tugging and slipping, and moving by inches
Halfway to the summit they clung to the road
And then, when the last of the pinches was bested
(You'll surely not say that a glass was a sin?)
The bullocks lay down 'neath the gum trees and rested
The bullockies steered for the bar of the inn

And, oh! but the best-paying load that I carried
Was one to the run where my sweetheart was nurse
We courted awhile, and agreed to get married
And couple our futures for better or worse
And as my old feet grew too weary to drag on
The miles of rough metal they met by the way
My eldest grew up and I gave him the wagon
He's plodding along by the bullocks today

Youtube clip

Poem

--Stewie.


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