The Free-Selector's Daughter by Henry Lawson

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I met her on the Lachlan Side --
   A darling girl I thought her,
And ere I left I swore I'd win
   The free-selector's daughter.

I milked her father's cows a month,
   I brought the wood and water,
I mended all the broken fence,
   Before I won the daughter.

I listened to her father's yarns,
   I did just what I 'oughter',
And what you'll have to do to win
   A free-selector's daughter.

I broke my pipe and burnt my twist,
   And washed my mouth with water;
I had a shave before I kissed
   The free-selector's daughter.

Then, rising in the frosty morn,
   I brought the cows for Mary,
And when I'd milked a bucketful
   I took it to the dairy.

I poured the milk into the dish
   While Mary held the strainer,
I summoned heart to speak my wish,
   And, oh! her blush grew plainer.

I told her I must leave the place,
   I said that I would miss her;
At first she turned away her face,
   And then she let me kiss her.

I put the bucket on the ground,
   And in my arms I caught her:
I'd give the world to hold again
   That free-selector's daughter!

First published in The Boomerang, 28 March 1891;
and later in
In the Days When the World Was Wide and Other Verses by Henry Lawson, 1900;
The Australian Town and Country Journal, 18 January 1905;
Humorous Verses by Henry Lawson, 1941;
Henry Lawson: Collected Verse: Vol 1 1885-1900 edited by Colin Roderick, 1967;
Along the Western Road: Bush Stories and Ballads, 1981;
A Camp-Fire Yarn: Henry Lawson Complete Works 1885-1900 edited by Leonard Cronin, 1984;
Henry Lawson: An Illustrated Treasury compiled by Glenys Smith, 1985;
A Collection of Australian Bush Verse, 1989; and
An Australian Treasury of Popular Verse edited by Jim Haynes, 2002.

Author reference sites: Austlit, Australian Dictionary of Biography, Australian Poetry Library, The Poetry of Henry Lawson website

See also.

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on March 28, 2012 9:14 AM.

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