Brigalow Mick by Harry "Breaker" Morant

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A dandy old horserman is Brigalow Mick --
   Which his name, sir, is Michael O'Dowd --
Whatever he's riding, when timber is thick,
   He is always in front of the crowd.

A few tangled locks that are fast turning white
   Crown a physog. the colour of brick,
But as keen as a kestrel's -- as bold and as bright --
   Is the blue eye of Brigalow Mick.

He is Martin's head-stockman, on Black-Cattle Creek --
   All the boys there are rare ones to ride --
But Mick is the "daddy"; and far you may seek
   Ere you find such an artist in hide.

He'll turn out a halter, or stockwhip can make,
   As you've seldom cast eyes on before;
And never the "nugget" was calved that could break
   Michael's whips, which he plaits by the score.

All the lads on the station are handy enough,
   Nor are frightened of grafting too hard,
But Mick, if the cattle are rowdy and rough,
   Is the pick of 'em all in a yard.

A bad colt to tackle -- a mad one to steer
   Through thick timber -- you'll hear Martin boast --
Mick yet is unrivalled, there isn't his peer
   Right from Camooweal in to the coast.

Ay! long may it be ere the scrubs are bereft
   Of the clearskins that give us the sport,
And long may the station have stock-riders left,
   Of the build of old Brigalow's sort.

First published
in The Bulletin, 9 April 1892, and in the same magazine on 23-30 December 1980;
and later in
The Poetry of "Breaker" Morant: from The Bulletin 1891-903 with original illustrations by Breaker Morant; and
The Romance of the Stockman: The Lore, Legend and Literature of Australia's Outback Heroes, 1993.

Author reference sites: Austlit, Australian Dictionary of Biography

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on April 9, 2012 5:54 PM.

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