You almost heard the surface bake, and saw the gum-leaves turn --
You could have watched the grass scorch brown had there been grass to burn.
In such a drought the strongest heart might well grow faint and weak --
'Twould frighten Satan to his home -- not far from Dingo Creek.
The tanks went dry on Ninety Mile, as tanks go dry out back,
The Half-Way Spring had failed at last when Marshall missed the track;
Beneath a dead tree on the plain we saw a pack-horse reel --
Too blind to see there was no shade, and too done-up to feel.
And charcoaled on the canvas bag (`twas written pretty clear)