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Lyr ADD: Freedom on the Wallaby (Henry Lawson)

DigiTrad:
ANDY'S GONE WITH CATTLE
DO YOU THINK THAT I DO NOT KNOW
FREEDOM'S ON THE WALLABY
IRELAND SHALL REBEL
REEDY RIVER


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emjay 21 May 07 - 08:38 PM
Peace 21 May 07 - 08:41 PM
Peace 21 May 07 - 08:42 PM
Peace 21 May 07 - 08:45 PM
Sandra in Sydney 21 May 07 - 08:45 PM
Sandra in Sydney 21 May 07 - 08:49 PM
Peace 21 May 07 - 08:51 PM
emjay 21 May 07 - 09:01 PM
Rowan 21 May 07 - 09:24 PM
Charley Noble 21 May 07 - 09:54 PM
GUEST 22 May 07 - 10:52 AM
Peace 22 May 07 - 01:15 PM
Little Robyn 22 May 07 - 03:40 PM
Bugsy 22 May 07 - 06:40 PM
Old Grizzly 22 May 07 - 06:50 PM
Rowan 22 May 07 - 07:11 PM
Daniel Kelly 04 Sep 21 - 03:29 AM
GerryM 04 Sep 21 - 06:22 AM
Daniel Kelly 04 Sep 21 - 07:01 AM
GerryM 05 Sep 21 - 05:47 AM
Daniel Kelly 05 Sep 21 - 07:05 AM
GUEST 06 Sep 21 - 08:51 AM
GUEST 24 Jan 23 - 01:12 AM
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Subject: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: emjay
Date: 21 May 07 - 08:38 PM

I've tried to post this three times, and I am going to try again. This time I won;t even try to embellish my request. I am just trying to figure out some words that may or may not be, "humpin' blooey."
Thanks!


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Subject: Lyr Add: FREEDOM ON THE WALLABY (Henry Lawson)
From: Peace
Date: 21 May 07 - 08:41 PM

Freedom on the Wallaby
1891
Henry Lawson


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

OUR FATHERS toiled for bitter bread
    While idlers thrived beside them;
But food to eat and clothes to wear
    Their native land denied them.
They left their native land in spite
    Of royalties' regalia,
And so they came, or if they stole
    Were sent out to Australia.

They struggled hard to make a home,
    Hard grubbing 'twas and clearing.
They weren't troubled much with toffs
    When they were pioneering;
And now that we have made the land
    A garden full of promise,
Old greed must crook his dirty hand
    And come to take it from us.

But Freedom's on the Wallaby,
    She'll knock the tyrants silly,
She's going to light another fire
    And boil another billy.
We'll make the tyrants feel the sting
    Of those that they would throttle;
They needn't say the fault is ours
    If blood should stain the wattle.


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: Peace
Date: 21 May 07 - 08:42 PM

OK. What words? The Oz folks will be awake soon (if not now).


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: Peace
Date: 21 May 07 - 08:45 PM

"Freedom on the Wallaby
Henry Lawson's well known poem, Freedom on the Wallaby, was written as a comment on the 1891 Australian shearers' strike and published by William Lane in the Worker in Brisbane, May 16, 1891.

The last two stanzas of the poem were read out by Frederick Brentnall MP on July 15, 1891 in the Queensland Legislative Council during a 'Vote of Thanks' to the armed police who broke up the Barcaldine strike camp. There were calls in the chamber for Lawson's arrest for sedition. Lawson wrote a bitter rejoinder to Brentnall, The Vote of Thanks Debate.

The "Rebel flag" referred to in the poem is the Eureka Flag that was first raised at the Eureka Stockade in 1854, above the Shearers' strike camp in 1891 and carried on the first Australian May Day march in Barcaldine on May 1, 1891."

That's from Answers.com


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 21 May 07 - 08:45 PM

humpin' (or humping) = carrying

bluey = worldly goods rolled up in a blanket

bluey is also a swag

for more info on Australian words, you can check out the Aussie Dictionary in the drop down menu at the top of this page

sandra


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Subject: Lyr Add: FREEDOM ON THE WALLABY (Henry Lawson)
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 21 May 07 - 08:49 PM

complete poems of Henry lawson
^^^
Freedom on the Wallaby


Henry Lawson

1891


Australia's a big country
An' Freedom's humping bluey,
An' Freedom's on the wallaby
Oh! don't you hear 'er cooey?
She's just begun to boomerang,
She'll knock the tyrants silly,
She's goin' to light another fire
And boil another billy.

Our fathers toiled for bitter bread
While loafers thrived beside 'em,
But food to eat and clothes to wear,
Their native land denied 'em.
An' so they left their native land
In spite of their devotion,
An' so they came, or if they stole,
Were sent across the ocean.

Then Freedom couldn't stand the glare
O' Royalty's regalia,
She left the loafers where they were,
An' came out to Australia.
But now across the mighty main
The chains have come ter bind her –
She little thought to see again
The wrongs she left behind her.

Our parents toil'd to make a home –
Hard grubbin 'twas an' clearin' –
They wasn't crowded much with lords
When they was pioneering.
But now that we have made the land
A garden full of promise,
Old Greed must crook 'is dirty hand
And come ter take it from us.

So we must fly a rebel flag,
As others did before us,
And we must sing a rebel song
And join in rebel chorus.
We'll make the tyrants feel the sting
O' those that they would throttle;
They needn't say the fault is ours
If blood should stain the wattle!


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: Peace
Date: 21 May 07 - 08:51 PM

Dang. Nice to see the whole poem.


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: emjay
Date: 21 May 07 - 09:01 PM

Thank you! I was so sure I could count on Mudcat and all the fine folks who read it and respond and post. My granddaughter and I were listening and trying to make sure we heard the words right. I learned all the things about the shearer's strike, what the rebel flag was -- I really wanted all the words -- and I wanted to know what humpin' bluey meant. I feel so much better now that I do know.
And we will go back to listening to the Makem and Spain Brothers singing the song. I realaly like it!
Martie


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: Rowan
Date: 21 May 07 - 09:24 PM

Swaggies were blokes who carried their swag, walking from property to property (called homesteads or ranches in the US but more usually called "stations" in Oz), looking for work and, sometimes, looking to avoid working too hard for the obligatory handout of basic tucker. The process was sometimes called the tucker track. There was a technique of rolling one's clobber into a blanket that could be carried comfortably over the shoulder. The nearest north American equivalent was a hobo but I'm not sure they carried swags, let alone waltzed matilda.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: Charley Noble
Date: 21 May 07 - 09:54 PM

emjay-

Those were good questions, and Mudcat, when we're being good, can provide some astonishing good answers.

We only have problems when no one has any good questions to ask. All mine have been answered finally, alas, but I still hang around in hopes that someone will ask something that I know the answer of.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: GUEST
Date: 22 May 07 - 10:52 AM

"The Eureka Flag' - finest flag an Aussie could fly IMO. Its midnight blue with a white cross and the stars of the 'southern cross' constellation emblazoned on the arms of the cross. Its beautiful and meaningful and one day it will be the national flag of our country.


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: Peace
Date: 22 May 07 - 01:15 PM

This it?


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: Little Robyn
Date: 22 May 07 - 03:40 PM

The late Frank Fyfe used to sing a similar song years ago. His one was Australia's
on the Wallaby
Do they both go to the same tune?
Robyn


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: Bugsy
Date: 22 May 07 - 06:40 PM

GUEST, whilst I fully agree with your sentiment about the Eureka Flag I don't see that it will ever become the national flag until th CFMEU stop using it as their flag. There are too many Right Wingers in the country who would say that we are "Selling out to the Unions".

CHeers

Bugsy


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: Old Grizzly
Date: 22 May 07 - 06:50 PM

Darn it - and I always thought it was the carrying out of an 'unnatural act' with a Kangaroo in the days before the sheep arrived .... Learn something new here every day :o)


..well... someone had to lower the tone :o)

Regards

Dave


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Subject: RE: Freedom on the Wallaby -- Meaning
From: Rowan
Date: 22 May 07 - 07:11 PM

Peace, you got it right.

And its image and meaning have been appropriated by every part of the political spectrum in Oz.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Freedom on the Wallaby (Henry Lawson)
From: Daniel Kelly
Date: 04 Sep 21 - 03:29 AM

Reviving this thread to ask a question about whether this song came before or after 'Australia's on the Wallaby'.

Lawson's poem was published in The Worker in Brisbane in May 1891, and the 'Australia' poem/song was published anonymously in the New Australia Journal in August 1893 (in the Communist Colony in Uruguay).

Some links to the relevant references on my recent recording.

Any suggestions on an earlier source for 'Australia's on the Wallaby'?

Warren Fahey pointed out that Lawson was friends with Mary Gilmore who left for Paraguay in 1893, maybe she wrote the song based on Henry's original?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Freedom on the Wallaby (Henry Lawson)
From: GerryM
Date: 04 Sep 21 - 06:22 AM

Chris Kempster, The Songs of Henry Lawson, writes, "Regardless of which came first, the Lawson poem or the traditional song [Australia's on the Wallaby], it seems likely that Lawson adapted the phrase 'Australia's on the wallaby' to link the Australian working man with the spirit of freedom."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Freedom on the Wallaby (Henry Lawson)
From: Daniel Kelly
Date: 04 Sep 21 - 07:01 AM

Gerry, but ‘Australia’s on the wallaby’ was not a traditional song, it was specifically written by people who had left Australia and were voicing there bitterness at not being able to live the way they wanted. The Lawson poem is similarly political, but about the shearer strike. If there is an earlier, non political, precursor to both songs/poems, I was hoping someone might have a link.

The phrase ‘on the wallaby’ was in common use in the early/mid 1850s, but the specific pairing with freedom or Australia seems peculiar to these two works.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Freedom on the Wallaby (Henry Lawson)
From: GerryM
Date: 05 Sep 21 - 05:47 AM

For what it's worth, "Australia's on the Wallaby" is in the Digital Tradition at https://mudcat.org/@displaysong.cfm?SongID=388

The first four lines there differ from what Ron Edwards gives in Great Australian Folk Songs. Edwards has

The old man's gone in search of gold,
The claim has proved a duffer,
They search for gold in the rain and cold,
And they are the ones that suffer,

Neither Edwards nor the DT gives any reference that goes back to Lawson's time.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Freedom on the Wallaby (Henry Lawson)
From: Daniel Kelly
Date: 05 Sep 21 - 07:05 AM

Hi Gerry,

The lyrics in DT match very closely to the version published in the 'New Australia' journal from Aug 1893. It looks like the Edwards version has been de-politicized.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Freedom on the Wallaby (Henry Lawson)
From: GUEST
Date: 06 Sep 21 - 08:51 AM

According to Roderick, "Freedom on the Wallaby (May 1891)" was given a major revision in September 1894, with further changes in 1913.

In addition minor changes were done for publication in drifferent journals.

1891 version, Published in the Brisbane Worker May 1891

OUR FATHERS toiled for bitter bread
    While idlers thrived beside them;
But food to eat and clothes to wear
    Their native land denied them.
They left their native land in spite
    Of royalties' regalia,
And so they came, or if they stole
    Were sent out to Australia.

They struggled hard to make a home,
    Hard grubbing 'twas and clearing.
They weren't troubled much with toffs
    When they were pioneering;
And now that we have made the land
    A garden full of promise,
Old greed must crook his dirty hand
    And come to take it from us.

But Freedom's on the Wallaby,
    She'll knock the tyrants silly,
She's going to light another fire
    And boil another billy.
We'll make the tyrants feel the sting
    Of those that they would throttle;
They needn't say the fault is ours
    If blood should stain the wattle.


1894 version Published Sydney Worker September 1894

There's trouble in the back countree
   An' Freedom's humping bluey,
An' Freedom's on the wallaby
   Oh! don't you hear 'er cooey?
She's just begun to boomerang,
   She'll knock the tyrants silly,
She's goin' to light another fire
   And boil another billy.

Our fathers toiled for bitter bread
   While loafers thrived beside 'em,
But food to eat and clothes to wear,
   Their native land denied 'em.
An' so they left their native land
   In spite of their devotion,
An' so they came, or if they stole,
   Were sent across the ocean.

Then Freedom couldn't stand the glare
   Of Royalty's regalia,
She left the loafers where they were,
    And came out to Australia.
But now across the mighty main
    The chains have come to bind her –
She little thought to see again
    The wrongs she left behind her.

Our parents toiled to make a home,
    Hard grubbin' 'twas an' clearin'
They wasn't crowded much with lords
    When they was pioneering.
But now that we have made the land
    A garden full of promise,
Old Greed must crook his dirty hand
    And come to take it from us.

So we must fly a rebel flag,
    As others did before us,
And we must sing a rebel song
    And join in rebel chorus.
We'll make the tyrants feel the sting
    Of those that they would throttle;
They needn't say the fault is ours
   If blood should stain the wattle!


Bruce D


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Freedom on the Wallaby (Henry Lawson)
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Jan 23 - 01:12 AM

I'm not so sure that Lawson was referring to the Eureka flag as his "rebel flag". In his other poem 'The old rebel flag in the rear' published in 1892, he clearly refers to the Red flag.

And the blood that was shed by old rebels,
For rights that shall ever be dear,
Drips down from the red of the flag overhead,
Of the Old Rebel Flag in the Rear.


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