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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Stewie Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia (952* d) RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia 24 Oct 20


THE ROAD TO NULLAGINE
(Grieg/Abbott)

I am with a survey party in the place that God forgot
And for White Australia it's the daddy of the lot
There ain't a drop of water anywhere along the line
There ain't no shady places on the road to Nullagine

Chorus:
I've tasted life in No Man's Land, I've fed the flies outback
I've tramped with empty tucker bags on Lawson's lonely track
I've toiled in northern Queensland where I thought the sun could shine
But no mistake, this takes the cake, the road to Nullagine

With a jigger on my shoulder and a waterbag in hand
I'm tramping' through the spinifex and ploughing up the sand
I'm sopping wet with honest sweat and salty as the brine
I'm boiled and baked and roasted on the road to Nullagine

When I wake up in the mornings, a swarm of hungry flies
Are trying to bore out holes in the corners of my eyes
I'm prickly heat from head to foot, this old frame of mine
Has had the dengue fever on the road to Nullagine

It's headaches, toothaches, bung eyes in a sling
Barcoo rot and God knows what - I can't eat anything
I'm all wrapped up in bandages, tied up with bits of twine
I'm like a walking leper on the road to Nullagine

One day I drank some water, 'twas from a scalding well
And very shortly after I felt inclined to yell
A burning hot sensation ran up and down my spine
I thought I was a gonner on the road to Nullagine

It's hermit crab and cock-eyed bobs, tinned dog and kangaroo
A change of diet once a month, boiled mutton or a stew
If we crave for pig or poultry when we're sitting down to dine
We thank the Lord for all we've got on the road to Nullagine

One night I went to Marble Bar, 'twas shortly after dark
And all the mongs for miles around came at me with a bark
I had a drop of amber, a shilling every time
There ain't no pots for sixpence on the road to Nullagine

It's public bars and fat cigars and let your sugar scoot
And decorate your wardrobe with a white pearl-button shirt
If you wear the good old dungarees and hobnails number nine
They class you as a nigger on the road to Nullagine

I've seen some queerish places I thought God had forgot
Out in the never-never where we used to call it hot
But this little bit o' country when old sol comes out to shine
Is the nearest place to hell on earth, this road to Nullagine

Another cracker from Roger Montgomery's 'Pilbara Connection'. The tune is given at pp140-141 of that collection. It was composed by Ted Grieg of Nullagine who could neither read nor write. He died about 1948. It was supplied to Montgomery by Tony Moriaty of Port Hedland. Evidently, it has also been published in Bill Scott's 'Penguin Book of Australian Humorous Verse'.



--Stewie.


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