The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #168402   Message #4068950
Posted By: Stewie
20-Aug-20 - 10:45 AM
Thread Name: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
Will Ogilvie, a Scotsman, wrote some fine bush ballads during his years as a jackaroo in Australia. One of his best was 'When the brumbies come to water' which circulated in oral tradition, changed, shortened and turned into a song. This version was collected by Ron Edwards.

WHEN THE BRUMBIES COME TO WATER

There's a lonely grave half hidden where the blue-grass droops above,
A slab that roughly marks it: we planted it with love
There's a mourning rank of riders closing in on every hand
O'er the vacant place he left us: he was best of all the band
Now he's lying cold and silent with his hidden hopes unwon
Where the brumbies come to water at the setting of the sun

There's a well-worn saddle hanging in the harness-room above
A good old stock horse waiting for the steps that never come
And his dog will lick some other hand when the wild mob swings
We'll get a slower rider to replace him on the wing
Ah but who will kiss his wife who kneels beside the long lagoon
Where the brumbies come to water at the rising of the moon

We will miss him in the cattle camps a trusted man and true
The daddy of all stockmen was young Rory Donahue
We will miss the tunes he used to play on his banjo long and low
We will miss the songs he used to sing of the days of long ago
Where the shadow-line lies broken 'neath the moonbeams' silver bars
Where the brumbies come to water at the twinkling of the stars

Youtube clip

--Stewie.