When Stock Go By by Harry "Breaker" Morant

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Ah me!  How clearly they come back -
Those golden days of long ago,
When down the droughty Bogan track
Tom came with stock from Ivanhoe.

The cattle passed our homestead gate,
Beside our well I watched them pass,
While Dad was in a fearful state
About his water and his grass.

Tom rode a bonny dark haired nag;
He wore a battered cabbage-tree;
And as I filled our water-bag,
He came and asked a drink from me.

Tom said that drink was just like wine;
He said my eyes were soft and brown;
He said there were no eyes like mine
From Dandaloo to Sydney Town.

I watched him with a trembling lip,
Yet little thought I then that he
Who asked a drink from me that trip,
Would next trip ask my Dad for me!

Tom's droving days long since are done;
The wet tear oft has dimmed his eye;
For days when I was wood and won
Come back to me - when stock go by.

First published in The Bulletin, 10 December 1903, and again in the same magazine on 1 February, 1950, and 22 December 1973;
and later in
This Land: An Anthology of Australian Poetry for Young People edited by M.M. Flynn and J. Groom; and
The Poetry of 'Breaker' Morant: from "The Bulletin" 1891-1903 with original illustrations by Breaker Morant, 1980.
Author reference sites: AustlitAustralian Dictionary of Biography

See also.

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on December 10, 2012 7:43 AM.

When Dad Drives Home from Town by Edward S. Sorenson was the previous entry in this blog.

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