28 February 2016

A Sunday Snip & Stuff--The Stockman

Ginger has asked us to try something different on our Sunday Blog posts, so for a change of pace, here’s a little rhyme from me. Bear in mind that I have never considered myself a poet, so don’t chastise me if I get the rhythm or pace etc. wrong at times. I just like words and telling stories. This one happens to be about a profession well-known in my homeland, Australia. Perhaps the days of the man riding out on his horse with just his dogs for company might have been replaced by men on motor bikes or in their sturdy four-wheel drives. But I like to think that in the remotest parts of this land there are still, and always will be, men like my Stockman.

The Stockman.

The bush and plains are the stockman’s home.
The pine clad mountains and valleys to roam
His hat rests low on his proud set head
and covers his hair of the brightest red.

His dog lopes close by his horses’ side,
and the pair never tire through a long day’s ride.
Old Irish has dreamed since he was a lad
of riding all day across this wide land.

His mother and father had both been rovers.
His dad was a man well known by the drovers
They’d died up along the Murrays’ side
and were buried near that great river so wide.

Irish knows well how to laugh and to cry;
to share life’s sorrows ‘neath God’s clear blue sky
He knows all there is about herding cows,
about riding all day when the wind just howls.

Once on a trek though the great desert land,
he almost got lost as for gold he panned
Old Irish has been where black parrots fly,
where the mulga and scrub reach well past the thigh.

Past rivers so dry that the cracks split the earth
and no one can say what the red land is worth
He’s been where the ‘roos jump high in the air,
where wallabies roam over land green and fair.

He thought once of settling, of taking a wife,
but decided with forethought that wasn’t the life
No drover would fit in a life in the city;
to leave all this space would be more than a pity.

In a place like Sydney or Melbourne or Darwin
where the people all flock and there’s plenty of sin
No woman in town would put up with his roving,
this need to be moving, and constantly going

To the back blocks and endless wide open plains,
far away from the city and shops and the trains
There’s no female around who’d put up with the hide
of a man who yearns just to be free to ride.

The man who knows joy in a good horse beneath you,
a dog for a pal and restrictions so few
The hard times and good times; the dust and the heat,
where no man gives in to a thing like defeat.

The bush folk have ways the townsfolk don’t know.
They’ll greet you with pleasure, and then let you go
To wander the wide open plains that you love,
where at night all the stars fairly blaze up above.

On a night when the air is crystal clear,
you’ll sit ‘neath a sky where the stars seem so near
You can reach out and touch them in the frosty sky
and be closer to God than you’ll be when you die.

A stockman knows all about drought dust and heat,
but in his way of life won’t put up with defeat.
His life’s filled with pleasures no town man would know.
Old Irish is off where the wanderers go.

Please wander over to these blogs for more Snips and Stuff 
from some of the talented authors at Books We Love:

http://mizging.blogspot.com (Ginger Simpson)

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  1. Who knew you had rhyming talents, too? I enjoyed your poem, and think you should enter it in a poetry contest. I felt as if I was born a rover as I read it. Loved it.

    1. Oh, I'm blushing, Ginger. Don't think my poems would win any awards, but thanks for the comment.

  2. I loved your poem. It was as if I was riding alongside of old Irish. Thanks for the trip through the bush and the plains

    1. So pleased you liked it, Elena. I love my country and unfortunately many of the old timers like Old Irish are fast fading into legend.