His Quest – a verse

His Quest. by Dryblower Murphy 1926

It was out beyond the Bulong track we met him swagging in,
He was middle-aged and ginger, haggard-eyed and famine-thin;
And while he munched some damper and a pannikin of tea,
He asked us if we thought he’d catch the Perth express at three.

There was not a watch amongst us, but I reckoned, by the sun,
If he cut across the leases it could easily be done;
But Mickey brought a clock to light he’d pinched at Hogan’s store,
And arst him “Wot’s your trouble, wot’s your worry-’urry for?

“You’ve ‘done the rattler in today,’ you ain’t got Buckley’s ’ope,
But there’s one goes down at night-time when the stony-brokers slope.”
The swagman sighed a strifle and unstrapped his scanty swag,
And drew a crumpled letter from a dirty linen bag.

His wasted hands were trembling and I turned a bit aside,
So as not to see the anguish he was trying hard to hide.
“Is there anything amiss at home?” I said to him at last,
He put the letter back again and tied the laces fast.

“There is,” he said, “the worst a man can bump agin’ in life,
A bloke wot boarded with us has skedaddled with me wife;
I trusted ’im and ’er I did, and many a time and oft
I’ve fed ’im w’en ’e’d not the cash to pay for wot ’e’d scoffed.

“A neighbour sent this letter and he’s given me the tip
Where I’ll find the pair who made me chuck my job and take this trip.”
“Any nippers?” chipped in Mickey, with a scowl upon his brow,
“But if or not, I’d belt the ’ide from off the bloomin’ cow.”

The stranger sighed and shook his head, and Mickey said “I see;
I s’pose they’ve been an’ done you for your bit of L.s.d.?”
“No ’ope,” the stranger murmured, “for I ’adn’t none to take.”
“Then,” said Mick, “you mean to maul ’im jist for old acquaintance sake.”

“A man ’oo shakes ’ee’s cobber’s wife deserves an ounce of lead.”
Again the stranger looked at us, and sadly shook his head.
“That ain’t the trouble, mate,” he said; “she isn’t worth a fight,
For ever since I married her we’ve never hit it right.”

“Then wot on earth’s your ’urry?” argued Mickey with a sniff,
“If you ain’t goin’ after boodle and you ain’t goin’ after biff?”
“Just this,” the stranger answered as he rose from off the log,
“When the pair of blighters bolted, spare me days, they took me dog!”

A Boulder Girl – Hazel Jeffries

I have just been sent these amazing photograph which I would like to share with you. They are produced with the kind permission of Bev Love who is the daughter in law of Hazel Love nee Jeffries:-

1926 Boulder Central Hazel Jeffries (Love) first row behind reclining boys. Third in from the right with a V necked jumper. I like how some of the girls have their dolls!!


5th and 6th Standards. Central School Boulder 1930  – Hazel Jeffries (Love) first row sitting, second from the left with decorative neckline.


Pre 1930 at Boulder Central School  –  Hazel Jeffries (Love) standing, fourth row back from the front. Behind the boys.  Second girl in from the left.

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North Kalgoorlie School -1960 to1970

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