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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 Ballad

  1. 51. The Ballad Of The Drover , Henry Lawson
  2. 52. A Ballad Of Nursery Rhyme , Robert Graves
  3. 53. The Ballad Of Father O'Hart , William Butler Yeats
  4. 54. A Ballad That We Do Not Perish , Zbigniew Herbert
  5. 55. A Ballad Of Hell , John Davidson
  6. 56. Sweet William's Farewell To Black-Ey'D S.. , John Gay
  7. 57. A Ballad Of François Villon, Prince Of A.. , Algernon Charles Swinburne
  8. 58. Ballad Of Fisher's Boarding-House , Rudyard Kipling
  9. 59. The Ballad Of Dead Ladies , Dante Gabriel Rossetti
  10. 60. Ballad Of Women I Love , Eugene Field
  11. 61. The Ballad Of G. R. Dibbs , Banjo Paterson
  12. 62. The Ballad Of A Bachelor , Ellis Parker Butler
  13. 63. The Ballad Of That P.N. , Banjo Paterson
  14. 64. The Ballad Of The Carpet Bag , Banjo Paterson
  15. 65. The Gothic Ballad , Ankoku Gekido
  16. 66. A Border Ballad , Paul Laurence Dunbar
  17. 67. The Ballad Of Cockatoo Dock , Banjo Paterson
  18. 68. The Ballad Of The Calliope , Banjo Paterson
  19. 69. Ballad Of The Drover , Henry Lawson
  20. 70. Water Ballad , Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  21. 71. Ballad About False Beacons , Yevgeny Yevtushenko
  22. 72. The Ballad Of Yaada (A Legend Of The Pac.. , Emily Pauline Johnson
  23. 73. The Challenge: A Court Ballad , Alexander Pope
  24. 74. The Devil's Walk. A Ballad , Percy Bysshe Shelley
  25. 75. Sandys Ghost ; A Proper Ballad On The Ne.. , Alexander Pope
  26. 76. Elspeth's Ballad , Sir Walter Scott
  27. 77. Gift(Ballad) , koyel mitra
  28. 78. The Ballad Of East And West , Rudyard Kipling
  29. 79. The Ballad Of Persse O'Reilly , James Joyce
  30. 80. The Delectable Ballad Of The Waller Lot , Eugene Field
  31. 81. The Ballad Of The Dark Ladie. A Fragment. , Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  32. 82. Sister Rosa: A Ballad , Percy Bysshe Shelley
  33. 83. An Election Ballad , Thomas Babbington Macaulay
  34. 84. The Ring Of Polycrates - A Ballad , Friedrich Schiller
  35. 85. Ode To The Cambro-Britons And Their Harp.. , Michael Drayton
  36. 86. A Very Mournful Ballad On The Siege And .. , George Gordon Byron
  37. 87. (n) 2 (Ballad) The Mermaid (Part Ii) , Renu Rakheja a.k.a Tranquil ..
  38. 88. Ballad Of Autumn , Marie E J Pitt
  39. 89. Polonius And The Ballad Singers , Padraic Colum
  40. 90. Ballad , Paul Laurence Dunbar
  41. 91. Mary - A Ballad , Robert Southey
  42. 92. The Ballad Of The Anti-Puritan , Gilbert Keith Chesterton
  43. 93. The Ballad Of Blasphemous Bill , Robert William Service
  44. 94. Ballad , Amelia Opie
  45. 95. Ballad Of Tailor Nils , Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson
  46. 96. Rudiger - A Ballad , Robert Southey
  47. 97. A Ballad Of The Scottsysshe Kyne , John Skelton
  48. 98. The Ballad Of Bouillabaisse , William Makepeace Thackeray
  49. 99. A Pastoral Ballad Iv: Disappointment , William Shenstone
  50. 100. The Ballad Of The "Clampherdown" , Rudyard Kipling
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