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The Ballad Of The Drover - Poem by Henry Lawson


Across the stony ridges,
Across the rolling plain,
Young Harry Dale, the drover,
Comes riding home again.
And well his stock-horse bears him,
And light of heart is he,
And stoutly his old pack-horse
Is trotting by his knee.

Up Queensland way with cattle
He travelled regions vast;
And many months have vanished
Since home-folk saw him last.
He hums a song of someone
He hopes to marry soon;
And hobble-chains and camp-ware
Keep jingling to the tune.

Beyond the hazy dado
Against the lower skies
And yon blue line of ranges
The homestead station lies.
And thitherward the drover
Jogs through the lazy noon,
While hobble-chains and camp-ware
Are jingling to a tune.

An hour has filled the heavens
With storm-clouds inky black;
At times the lightning trickles
Around the drover's track;
But Harry pushes onward,
His horses' strength he tries,
In hope to reach the river
Before the flood shall rise.

The thunder from above him
Goes rolling o'er the plain;
And down on thirsty pastures
In torrents falls the rain.
And every creek and gully
Sends forth its little flood,
Till the river runs a banker,
All stained with yellow mud.

Now Harry speaks to Rover,
The best dog on the plains,
And to his hardy horses,
And strokes their shaggy manes;
`We've breasted bigger rivers
When floods were at their height
Nor shall this gutter stop us
From getting home to-night!'

The thunder growls a warning,
The ghastly lightnings gleam,
As the drover turns his horses
To swim the fatal stream.
But, oh! the flood runs stronger
Than e'er it ran before;
The saddle-horse is failing,
And only half-way o'er!

When flashes next the lightning,
The flood's grey breast is blank,
And a cattle dog and pack-horse
Are struggling up the bank.
But in the lonely homestead
The girl will wait in vain --
He'll never pass the stations
In charge of stock again.

The faithful dog a moment
Sits panting on the bank,
And then swims through the current
To where his master sank.
And round and round in circles
He fights with failing strength,
Till, borne down by the waters,
The old dog sinks at length.

Across the flooded lowlands
And slopes of sodden loam
The pack-horse struggles onward,
To take dumb tidings home.
And mud-stained, wet, and weary,
Through ranges dark goes he;
While hobble-chains and tinware
Are sounding eerily.

. . . . .

The floods are in the ocean,
The stream is clear again,
And now a verdant carpet
Is stretched across the plain.
But someone's eyes are saddened,
And someone's heart still bleeds
In sorrow for the drover
Who sleeps among the reeds.


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Poems About Horse

  1. 1. The Ballad Of The Drover , Henry Lawson
  2. 2. Cavalier Tunes: Boot And Saddle , Robert Browning
  3. 3. The Old Timer's Steeplechase , Banjo Paterson
  4. 4. Marshall's Mate , Henry Lawson
  5. 5. Ye Carpette Knyghte , Lewis Carroll
  6. 6. Anastasia & Sandman , Larry Levis
  7. 7. The Ode Of Ántara (Alternate Translation) , Antarah (Antar) Ibn Shaddad
  8. 8. Pelleas And Ettarre , Alfred Lord Tennyson
  9. 9. Horse And Rider , Horse Poet
  10. 10. The Iliad: Book 23 , Homer
  11. 11. Tamar , Robinson Jeffers
  12. 12. The Wargeilah Handicap , Banjo Paterson
  13. 13. ! Halloween Tale , Linda Ori
  14. 14. Ballad Of The Drover , Henry Lawson
  15. 15. The Battle Of Culloden , William Topaz McGonagall
  16. 16. Thurso’s Landing , Robinson Jeffers
  17. 17. Fragments - Lines 1267 - 1270 , Theognis
  18. 18. My Horse And Me , Kathleen West
  19. 19. Good Cheer , Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson
  20. 20. Mother And Sphinx , Eugene Field
  21. 21. Battle Of Hastings - I , Thomas Chatterton
  22. 22. Wish Me Luck! , Geetha Jayakumar
  23. 23. Ashtaroth: A Dramatic Lyric , Adam Lindsay Gordon
  24. 24. Marshal Neigh, V.C. , Edward George Dyson
  25. 25. Mazeppa , George Gordon Byron
  26. 26. Bare-Back Rider (A Lucid Dream) , Sonya Florentino
  27. 27. A Hidden Life , George MacDonald
  28. 28. The Knight's Leap: A Legend Of Altenar , Charles Kingsley
  29. 29. Getting A Horse , Lonnie Hicks
  30. 30. The Sacrifice Of Er-Heb , Rudyard Kipling
  31. 31. A Cow , Mr. Bean
  32. 32. Antara , Wilfrid Scawen Blunt
  33. 33. The Wild Huntsman , Sir Walter Scott
  34. 34. Abu Midjan , George MacDonald
  35. 35. Horse Play , Ayyappa Paniker
  36. 36. .... , RIC S. BASTASA
  37. 37. Kingsborough , Henry Kendall
  38. 38. A Cowboy’s Tale , Sidi J. Mahtrow
  39. 39. Give Your Heart To The Hawks , Robinson Jeffers
  40. 40. The Lord Of The Isles: Canto Vi. , Sir Walter Scott
  41. 41. The Wanderings Of Oisin: Book Iii , William Butler Yeats
  42. 42. ***horse Draws Man A Cow , Sylvi Sylva
  43. 43. The Secret Of Being A Cowboy , Catherynne M. Valente
  44. 44. Uncle Ned’s Tales: How The Flag Was Saved , John Boyle O'Reilly
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  47. 47. Me & My Horse , Horse Lover
  48. 48. Aaaaa Horses Are Heroes , S.zaynub Kamoonpuri
  49. 49. Color Blind , Ben Gieske
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