An Old Mate.

I met him in a country pub one sultry summer's day,
I'd come to town to have a binge, I'd just received my pay.
The bar was quite deserted, just this other bloke and me,
And I reckoned by the way he looked he needed company.

I introduced myself to him and bought a round of beer,
And said,"Just tell me where to go, if you don't want me here."
He looked at me and gave a grin and said,"Your welcome mate."
The story that he told to me I'd like here to relate.

"I'd had a friend," he said to me,"the greatest mate I knew
And I knew that I could count on him if I was in a blue.
When work was short and money scarce, old Blue was right by me
And in good times when I'd a quid we'd both go on a spree.

"We were running scrubber cattle out the Thargominda way,
Wild cows and scrub bulls bailed and stirred for a fight old
Blue was there with me,he'd fight them 'till their spirits broke
The gamest dog you'd see"

"We'd bailed a crossbreed late one day, a big bull strong and straight,
Wide upswept horns and matted tail and wide eyes filled with hate.
I knew that Blue was tired and hot,we'd had a long,dry day.
I also knew the bull was bad, he'd make me earn my pay.

I yelled to blue to stay behind and drove my stock horse past,
I swear to God I'd never seen a bull that turned about so fast.
I tried to turn my pony 'round,I know he gave his best
The bull came charging straight and fast and gored him in the chest.

My horse fell with a scream of pain and smashed me to the ground,
I felt my right leg snap in two, and blood was all around.
I saw that wild bull turn around. I knew this was the end,
When Blue dashed out to help his mate, he'd come to save a friend.

He grabbed that bull low on the nose and tried to pull him down,
The scrubber roared with pain and fear, and smashed him to the ground.
But Blue, he held on to that nose, he gave his life for me,
As that wild bull wheeled quickly 'round and crushed him on a tree.

Then like a flash the bull was gone and Blue lay stiff and still,
I knew that he had gone to rest, he'd climbed the last long hill.
The others found me where I'd crawled to safety by a log,
They carried that old mate back home - my faithfull Cattle Dog.

By Paul Harrower."

Submitted by John Chandler

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