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Children of the Bush   By: (1867-1922)

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By Henry Lawson

[Transcriber's notes: The year of first magazine publication is shown in the table of contents below. Additional transcriber's notes, including a glossary, are included at the end of the eBook.]


Send Round the Hat: 1901 The Pretty Girl in the Army: 1901 "Lord Douglas": 1901 The Blindness of One eyed Brogan: 1901 The Sundowners: 1901 A Sketch of Mateship: 1902 On the Tucker Track: 1897 A Bush Publican's Lament: 1901 The Shearer's Dream: 1902 The Lost Souls' Hotel: 1902 The Boozers' Home: 1899 The Sex Problem Again: 1898 The Romance of the Swag: 1901 "Buckholts' Gate": 1901 The Bush Fire: 1901 The House that Was Never Built: 1901 "Barney, Take me home Again": 1901 A Droving Yarn: 1899 Gettin' Back on Dave Regan: 1901 "Shall We Gather at the River": 1901 His Brother's Keeper: 1901 The Ghosts of Many Christmases: 1901


Now this is the creed from the Book of the Bush Should be simple and plain to a dunce: "If a man's in a hole you must pass round the hat Were he jail bird or gentleman once."

"Is it any harm to wake yer?"

It was about nine o'clock in the morning, and, though it was Sunday morning, it was no harm to wake me; but the shearer had mistaken me for a deaf jackaroo, who was staying at the shanty and was something like me, and had good naturedly shouted almost at the top of his voice, and he woke the whole shanty. Anyway he woke three or four others who were sleeping on beds and stretchers, and one on a shake down on the floor, in the same room. It had been a wet night, and the shanty was full of shearers from Big Billabong Shed which had cut out the day before. My room mates had been drinking and gambling overnight, and they swore luridly at the intruder for disturbing them.

He was six foot three or thereabout. He was loosely built, bony, sandy complexioned and grey eyed. He wore a good humoured grin at most times, as I noticed later on; he was of a type of bushman that I always liked the sort that seem to get more good natured the longer they grow, yet are hard knuckled and would accommodate a man who wanted to fight, or thrash a bully in a good natured way. The sort that like to carry somebody's baby round, and cut wood, carry water and do little things for overworked married bushwomen. He wore a saddle tweed sac suit two sizes too small for him, and his face, neck, great hands and bony wrists were covered with sun blotches and freckles.

"I hope I ain't disturbin' yer," he shouted, as he bent over my bunk, "but there's a cove "

"You needn't shout!" I interrupted, "I'm not deaf."

"Oh I beg your pardon!" he shouted. "I didn't know I was yellin'. I thought you was the deaf feller."

"Oh, that's all right," I said. "What's the trouble?"

"Wait till them other chaps is done swearin' and I'll tell yer," he said. He spoke with a quiet, good natured drawl, with something of the nasal twang, but tone and drawl distinctly Australian altogether apart from that of the Americans.

"Oh, spit it out for Christ's sake, Long'un!" yelled One eyed Bogan, who had been the worst swearer in a rough shed, and he fell back on his bunk as if his previous remarks had exhausted him.

"It's that there sick jackaroo that was pickin' up at Big Billabong," said the Giraffe. "He had to knock off the first week, an' he's been here ever since. They're sendin' him away to the hospital in Sydney by the speeshall train. They're just goin' to take him up in the wagonette to the railway station, an' I thought I might as well go round with the hat an' get him a few bob... Continue reading book >>

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