The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #86350   Message #1608707
Posted By: Barbara
19-Nov-05 - 02:28 AM
Thread Name: Lyr/Tune Req: Humping the Drum
Subject: Lyr Add: THE TENT POLES ARE ROTTEN (Henry Lawson)
So you probably don't want this one:

(Henry Lawson)

The tent poles are rotten, and the campfires dead
And the possums they ramble in the trees overhead
I'm out on the wallaby, I'm humping my drum
And I tramp down the road where the sundowners come.

And it's north west by west over ranges and far
To the plains where the cattle and the sheep stations are
With the sky for my roof and the earth for my bunk
And the calico bag for my damper and my junk.

And scarcely a comrade my memory reveals
But the spirit still tingles in my toes and my heels.
Now my tent is all torn and my blankets are damp
And the fast-rising waters still flow by the camp

And the cold water rises in jets from the floor
As l lie on my bed and I listen to it roar
And I think of tomorrow how my foot-steps will lag
As I tramp beneath the weight of a rain-sodden swag.

But the way of a swagman is mostly uphill
But there's joys to be found on the wallaby still
When your day has gone by with its tramp and its tail
And your campfire you build and your billy it can boil

Oh, there's comfort and peace in the bowl of your clay
Or the yarn of a mate who is tramping that way.
But beware of the city where it's poison for years
And there's always a danger in drinking long beers

For a bushman gets bushed in the streets of the town
And he loses his friends when his cheque's all knocked down
He's alright 'til his pockets are empty and then
He must hump his old bluey up the country again.