Where the Brumbies Come to Water

Original Text: 
Fair Girls and Gray Horses, With Other Verses (Sydney: Angus and Robertson, 1958): 24. PR 6029 .G4 F3 1958 Robarts Library
1There's a lonely grave half hidden where the blue-grass droops above,
2And the slab is rough that marks it, but we planted it for love;
3There's a well-worn saddle hanging in the harness-room at home
4And a good old stock-horse waiting for the steps that never come;
5There's a mourning rank of riders closing in on either hand
6O'er the vacant place he left us -- he, the best of all the band,
7Who is lying cold and silent with his hoarded hopes unwon
8Where the brumbies come to water at the setting of the sun.
9Some other mate with rougher touch will twist our greenhide thongs,
10And round the fire some harsher voice will sing his lilting songs;
11His dog will lick some other hand, and when the wild mob swings
12We'll get some slower rider to replace him in the wings;
13His horse will find a master new ere twice the sun goes down,
14But who will kiss his light-o'-love a-weeping in the town? --
15His light-o'-love who kneels at night beyond the long lagoon
16Where the brumbies come to water at the rising of the moon.
17We've called her hard and bitter names who chose -- another's wife --
18To chain our comrade in her thrall and wreck his strong young life;
19We've cursed her for her cruel love that seared like hate -- and yet
20We know when all is over there is one will no forget,
21As she piles the white bush blossoms where her poor lost lover lies
22With the death-dew on his forehead and the grave-dark in his eyes,
23Where the shadow-line is broken by the moonbeam's silver bars,
24And the brumbies come to water at the lightning of the stars.
Publication Start Year: 
1898
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
1898