Looking for a poem

Looking for a poem and can't find it? Post what you know and someone may be able to help.
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Location: Binalong NSW

Looking for a poem

Post by Robyn » Mon May 23, 2016 8:59 am

One of the elderly residents of the aged care facility where I do poetry has asked me to find a poem called Baderman of the Dandenongs (spelling may not be accurate, it's just how I heard it).
Does anyone know where I can find a copy?
Thanking you in anticipation...
Robyn Sykes, the Binalong Bard.

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Maureen K Clifford
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Location: Ipswich - Paul Pisasale country and home of the Ipswich Poetry Feast

Re: Looking for a poem

Post by Maureen K Clifford » Mon May 23, 2016 10:03 am

Bannerman of the Dandenongs ... Alice Werner

I rode through the Bush in the burning noon,
Over the hills to my bride, --
The track was rough and the way was long,
And Bannerman of the Dandenong,
He rode along by my side.

A day's march off my Beautiful dwelt,
By the Murray streams in the West; --
Lightly lilting a gay love-song
Rode Bannerman of the Dandenong,
With a blood-red rose on his breast.

"Red, red rose of the Western streams"
Was the song he sang that day --
Truest comrade in hour of need, --
Bay Mathinna his peerless steed --
I had my own good grey.

There fell a spark on the upland grass --
The dry Bush leapt into flame; --
And I felt my heart go cold as death,
And Bannerman smiled and caught his breath, --
But I heard him name Her name.

Down the hill-side the fire-floods rushed,
On the roaring eastern wind; --
Neck and neck was the reckless race, --
Ever the bay mare kept her pace,
But the grey horse dropped behind.

He turned in the saddle -- "Let's change, I say!"
And his bridle rein he drew.
He sprang to the ground, -- "Look sharp!" he said
With a backward toss of his curly head --
"I ride lighter than you!"

Down and up -- it was quickly done --
No words to waste that day! --
Swift as a swallow she sped along,
The good bay mare from Dandenong, --
And Bannerman rode the grey.

The hot air scorched like a furnace blast
From the very mouth of Hell: --
The blue gums caught and blazed on high
Like flaming pillars into the sky; . . .
The grey horse staggered and fell.

"Ride, ride, lad, -- ride for her sake!" he cried; --
Into the gulf of flame
Were swept, in less than a breathing space
The laughing eyes, and the comely face,
And the lips that named HER name.

She bore me bravely, the good bay mare; --
Stunned, and dizzy and blind,
I heard the sound of a mingling roar --
'Twas the Lachlan River that rushed before,
And the flames that rolled behind.

Safe -- safe, at Nammoora gate,
I fell, and lay like a stone.
O love! thine arms were about me then,
Thy warm tears called me to life again, --
But -- O God! that I came alone! --

We dwell in peace, my beautiful one
And I, by the streams in the West, --
But oft through the mist of my dreams along
Rides Bannerman of the Dandenong,
With the blood-red rose on his breast.
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Vic Jefferies
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Re: Looking for a poem

Post by Vic Jefferies » Mon May 23, 2016 11:47 am

Well done Maureen. Alice Werner was another amazingly interesting woman and among many other accomplishments was a professor of Swahili and Bantu languages. For many years the author of the wonderful poem The Death of Ben Hall was
unknown and at one point it was thought the author may have been Alice Werner. It is now generally accepted that the poem was written by Will Ogilvie.
Last edited by Vic Jefferies on Mon May 23, 2016 12:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Location: Binalong NSW

Re: Looking for a poem

Post by Robyn » Mon May 23, 2016 12:16 pm

Fantastic. Thanks Maureen. You'll make one old lady very happy (and me).
Robyn Sykes, the Binalong Bard.

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