The Squatteroo by Edward S. Sorenson

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A long-legged, lanky man was he, with grizzly beard and grey,
A stranger at the shanty -- for he came from far away;
And we noticed that his harness was the product of the 'roo,
      And his boots and -- strike me fat!
      There was hair upon his hat!
And he said: "Oi am a grazin' man -- the only Squattheroo!"

So we took him into "Mother's," and we wet him at the bar,
And he spoke about his cattle -- how he branded them with tar,
And mustered by the thousand out upon the lone Paroo.
      They were not the common kine,
      Neither were they grunting swine --
"Faith! They only go on two legs yit," observed the Squatteroo.

He said he'd learnt how garden-stuff was once the rankest weeds,
How men evolved from puny stock the very best of breeds;
And then he crossed the Darling to domesticate the 'roo.
      He would choose his paramours,
      Make him locomote on fours --
Then he'd be a source of profit to the only Squatreroo!

He would make of him a packer, he would teach him not to hop,
And when he had induced the brute his former end to drop,
He would send the horizontal fact some day to Sydney Zoo.
      "Oi am shure compulsive use
      Of the forelegs will produce
What ye'd call an abnormality," averted the Squatteroo.

"There's no dacent occupation for a baste thot stands on ind!
But, he'll be a perfect jewel whin his little paws descind!
And he'll thrott around the shanty loike O'Doolan's pig -- Hooroo!
      He'll be yoked in pairs like oxen,
      He'll forgit his thricks o' boxin',
An' we'll thrain him for the races," said the backblock Squatteroo.

Then he swung into his saddle, said he must be making tracks;
No, he didn't want no stockmen, he employed a hundred blacks,
Who were out a-branding joeys now upon the lone Paroo.
      By-and-by we'd see them riding
      On 'roo-back to Cobar siding,
A-driving kangaroo; for him -- that long-legged Squatteroo!

First published in The Bulletin, 8 March 1902

Author reference sites: Austlit, Australian Dictionary of Biography

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on March 8, 2011 9:02 AM.

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