Travelling Down The Castlereagh (A Bushman's Song)

Banjo Patterson

 

I'm travelling down the Castlereagh, and I'm a station-hand,

I'm handy with the roping pole, I'm handy with the brand,

And I can ride a rowdy colt, or swing an axe all day,

But there's no demand for a station-hand along the Castlereagh.

 

So it's shift, boys, shift, for there isn't the slightest doubt

We've got make a shift for the stations further out,

So I saddled up my horses and I whistled for my dog,

And we makes for up the country at the old jig-jog.

 

This old black horse I'm riding-if you notice what's his brand,

He wears the crooked R, there’s none finer in the land.

He takes a lot of beating, and the other day we tried,

For a bit of a joke, with a racing bloke, for twenty pounds a side.

 

It was shift, boys, shift, for there wasn't the slightest doubt

That I had to make him shift for the money was running out;

But he cantered home a winner, with the other one at the flog-

He's a red-hot sort to pick up with his old jig-jog.

 

I asked a cove tor shearing once along the Marthaguy:

"We shear non-union here," says he. "I call it scab," says I.

I looked along the shearin' floor before I turned to go-

There were eight or ten non-union men a-shearing in a row.

 

It was shift, boys, shift, tor there wasn't the slightest doubt

It was time to make a shift with the leprosy about,

So I saddled up my horses, and I whistled to my dog,

And I left his scabby station at the old jig-jog.

  

I went to Illawarra, where my brother's got a farm;

He has to ask the landlord's leave before he lifts his arm,

The landlord owns the countryside-man, woman, dog and cat,

They haven't the cheek to dare to speak without they touch their hat.

  

It was shift, boys, shift, tor there wasn't the slightest doubt

Their little landlord god and I would soon have fallen out;

Was I to touch my hat to him?-was I his bloomin dog?

So I makes tor up the country at the old jig-jog.

 

But it's time that I was movin', I've a mighty way to go

Till I drink artesian water from a thousand feet below;

Till I meet the overlanders with the cattle comin' down-

And I'll work a while and make a pile, then have a spree in town.

  

So it's shift, boys, shift, for there isn't the slightest doubt

We've got make a shift for the stations further out,

So I saddled up my horses and I whistled for my dog,

And we makes for up the country at the old jig-jog.