The Old Bush Workers

A Poem by 'Ironbark' Russ Singleton

They sang their songs of outback teams
Of bullocks and all that,
Of Diggers in their search for gold
Down on the "Dingo Flat".

They humped their blueys far and wide
On many a distant run,
They hungered and they thirsted too
Beneath the burning sun.

They navvied on the railway lines
And laboured on the bridges,
They cleared the timber from the plains
And tamed the rugged ridges.

And starving stock they trailed behind
Through dust or seas of mud,
They battled through depression times,
Fought fire, drought and flood.

They cut their share of Queensland cane
And shore their share of sheep,
They've ridden boundaries by the mile
For thirty bob and keep.

They've sawn the logs in timber mills
And shot wild dingoes too.
In fact they've had a crack at all
The things that bushmen do.

But they have grown too old to toil
And lacking of the spoil,
They sit around ten thousand camps,
And watch the billies boil.

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