Mudcat Café message #4071291 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #168402   Message #4071291
Posted By: rich-joy
09-Sep-20 - 06:06 AM
Thread Name: Mudcat Australia/NZ Songbook
Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia

T’was the ninth of October, in Echuca way she lay
A new boat on the river, while the steamers passed away
Laid up, forgotten, rotting, just a few were left to trade
Of those roaring river steamers, that saw the outback made.

Excelsior keep turning
Murrumbidgee, you’ll never die
J L Roberts on the water, see the paddles fly
Shadow ships go softly with her, drift on all her days
Coonawarra, lovely black swan, takes the River Ways.

She was built in 1950, for the Murray tourist trade
Murray Valley Coaches, lost a boat in ’48
Brave old Murrumbidgee burned, that sad heroic day
There was not a soul there perished, but that fine ship passed away.

Last barge to work the Murrumbidgee, J L Roberts stood alone
For sixty years she had ploughed the rivers, her story was well-known
On her hull they have built a lovely boat, to take the ‘Bidgee’s place
And they named her for the black swan, Coonawarra, full of grace.

For ninety years that redgum hull, has left the river sand
For thirty years the Coonawarra, beat across the land
Three ghosts they travel with her, from the elder time
And three shadows has the Coonawarra, they carry on the line.

Lyn and Denis Tracy used to do a really beautiful version of this, but luckily there is a version on YT by Irene Petrie :

Cheers, R-J