Mudcat Café message #4071696 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #168402   Message #4071696
Posted By: rich-joy
12-Sep-20 - 09:52 PM
Thread Name: Mudcat Australia/NZ Songbook
Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
WARATAH AND WATTLE ~ Frances Patterson (& Henry Lawson)

Though poor and in trouble I wander alone
With a rebel cockade in my hand
Though friends may desert me and kindred disown
My country will never do that!
You may sing of the Shamrock, the Thistle, the Rose
Or the Three-in-a-Bunch, if you will
But I know of a country thatís gathered all those
And I love the Great Land where the Waratah grows
And the Wattle bough blooms on the hill.                  

In Dreamtime, they tell us, the Great Spirits came
They wandered and traveled the land
They raised up the mountains and flattened the plains
They laid down the rocks and the sand
They carved out a course for the long riverís way
They planted the forests in shade
The great power of forming is joined to their way
And the tracks that they traveled are still here today
Under the roads we have made.                                         

Now under the Wattle I wander alone
And I think of the loss and the gain
To the land where we live we no longer belong
Although it is held in our name
This great earth which has borne us we want to disown
We have deserted our land
We are separate now and we live quite alone
And we try to grow roots in a place that we own
And bitterly donít understand
   And bitterly, we wonít understand.

I learnt this great song in the 80s from the singing of Lynne Tracey (now back to being Lynne Muir), who is a most beautiful artist - calligrapher in Victoria and now sings classical music rather than folk.
Though the first verse is Lawson's, Frances Paterson of Sydney, wrote the next two and composed the music. If you find Lawson's poem being sung on YT, it's pretty dire, and the tune definitely does not fit this song.
Frances recorded her song in 1987 on an album of originals called "Sol Y Sombra" - I cannot find the song online, but I have ordered the LP from EBay!
Frances was also in bands like "Okapi Guitar Band" performing "AfroPop" - great-sounding dance music. She died in 2018.

Cheers, R-J