This poem is believed to be written by Ted Rogers of "The Basin", Paupong.
It was July the twenty fourth in nineteen twenty two,
That I thought it best to travel west in search of kangaroo.
With rifle on my back and dogs that numbered two
The pick of my own pack-Sport and Tigeroo.
Now Sport he is a bonzer-the best I've ever seen,
While Tigeroo is not too bad when feeling all serene.
Sport has found a mother; they've gone like chain lightning
He'll kill that young one's mother and give the rest a fright'ning.
They fire them from their pouches-they never more look back
And I am wearing hobnail bluchers and following in the track.
You hear a roar and rattle, you see the saplings fall
You would think it was wild cattle, not kangaroos at all.
And now the trees toss, and now it starts to rain.
I fear that I am lost and may ne'er be found again.
Yes I am lost out in the ranges, and soon it'll be my end
The very worst of strangers , now would be my friend.
I have done a fair days tramp, and thickest is the fog
So I settled down to camp, and light a fine big log.
Now I'm glad that I'm a smoker and have tobacco dry
I've lots more at Boloco, but where the hell am I?
I rose again on Wednesday; I hadn't had much sleep
I thought I'd have a poke about and try and find a sheep.
Around about the jungle, over rut and rabbit holes
I tried to find a jumbuck to roast upon the coals.
I walked around and round, to me it seemed like hours
Why! Damned if I ain't found , for this is Billy Powers.
Now Power was a stranger: He said I've never seen this chap,
But I'll see him out of danger and take him through the Gap.
I haven't any weed, I am wet and all a shiver
I would like to have a feed, I'm sure I'd love the giver.
When I first told young Tommy that rooing was a failure
He thought I was a Pommy, just come out to Australia.
My sister wrote out this poem in 2005, the first time it was written down. She heard Tom Barry reciting it in an interview for the NLA. She found there were slight differences in the wording etc and wrote out two versions. She had heard it recited many times by our family and knew that it could alter according to the person reciting it and how good their memory was.
I have also altered it slightly to make it rhyme better and to keep the sequence of thoughts, eg I said fright'ning instead of frightening which doesn't fit in with lightning. I have re-arranged the verses to fit in with the sequence of events and changed â€™anotherâ€™ to â€™motherâ€™ to make sense of the mother tossing her Joey out of the pouch.
The poem could go on and on depending whether the speaker felt like adding a few verses I suppose. Don (Wellsmore) has a suspicion that Ted didn't write the poem as he had so little education, but if he didn't write it then who did? One doesn't necessarily have education to make up a poem, especially if one has heard and liked poetry.
Tommy and Billy were brothers Power from Boloco South.