The Ridge Road by C.J. Dennis

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After Strezlecki, settlers came,
   Back in the old hard years,
To play a lonely, losing game
'Gainst Gippsland mud and forest flame -
   Tough-hearted pioneers.
A scanty living here to seek,
   They fought a battle dire;
They blazed a trail to Brandy Creek
And travelled fifty miles a week
   On sledges thro' the mire.

They called their inn the "Robin Hood,"
   A welcome refuge then,
Last outpost of good cheer that stood,
Most fitly, by the robber wood
   That filched the strength of men.
And after, on the way they took
   By Warragul and Drouin,
By Gunyah-Gunyah and Balook,
Stood many a home by hill and brook
   Gone, like their hopes, to ruin.

But now who seeks, on pleasure bent,
   The road that tops the ridge
Where once the struggling settlers went
Shall find a land of sleek content
   By bank and sturdy bridge.
And where the men knew the forest's wrath
   Around the Allambee,
By Kurrajong and Mirboo North,
The silver way goes winding forth
   To Yarram and the sea.

First published in The Herald, 15 December 1931

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on December 15, 2013 7:53 AM.

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