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The Road to Hogans Gap

Written by: Andrew Barton Paterson | Biography
 | Quotes (1) |
 Now look, you see, it’s this way like, 
You cross the broken bridge 
And run the crick down till you strike 
The second right-hand ridge. 
The track is hard to see in parts, 
But still it’s pretty clear; 
There’s been two Injin hawkers’ carts 
Along that road this year. 

Well, run that right-hand ridge along— 
It ain’t, to say, too steep— 
There’s two fresh tracks might put you wrong 
Where blokes went out with sheep. 

But keep the crick upon your right, 
And follow pretty straight 
Along the spur, until you sight 
A wire and sapling gate. 

Well, that’s where Hogan’s old grey mare 
Fell off and broke her back; 
You’ll see her carcase layin’ there, 
Jist down below the track. 

And then you drop two mile, or three, 
It’s pretty steep and blind; 
You want to go and fall a tree 
And tie it on behind. 

And then you pass a broken cart 
Below a granite bluff; 
And that is where you strike the part 
They reckon pretty rough. 

But by the time you’ve got that far 
It’s either cure or kill, 
So turn your horses round the spur 
And face ’em up the hill. 

For look, if you should miss the slope 
And get below the track, 
You haven’t got the whitest hope 
Of ever gettin’ back. 

An’ half way up you’ll see the hide 
Of Hogan’s brindled bull; 
Well, mind and keep the right-hand side, 
The left’s too steep a pull. 

And both the banks is full of cracks; 
An’ just about at dark 
You’ll see the last year’s bullock tracks 
Where Hogan drew the bark. 

The marks is old and pretty faint— 
And grown with scrub and such; 
Of course the track to Hogan’s ain’t 
A road that’s travelled much. 

But turn and run the tracks along 
For half a mile or more, 
And then, of course, you can’t go wrong— 
You’re right at Hogan’s door. 

When first you come to Hogan’s gate 
He mightn’t show, perhaps; 
He’s pretty sure to plant and wait 
To see it ain’t the traps. 

I wouldn’t call it good enough 
To let your horses out; 
There’s some that’s pretty extra rough 
Is livin’ round about. 

It’s likely if your horses did 
Get feedin’ near the track, 
It’s goin’ to cost at least a quid 
Or more to get them back. 

So, if you find they’re off the place, 
It’s up to you to go 
And flash a quid in Hogan’s face— 
He’ll know the blokes that know. 

But listen—if you’re feelin’ dry, 
Just see there’s no one near, 
And go and wink the other eye 
And ask for ginger beer. 

The blokes come in from near and far 
To sample Hogan’s pop; 
They reckon once they breast the bar 
They stay there till they drop. 

On Sundays you can see them spread 
Like flies around the tap. 
It’s like that song “The Livin’ Dead” 
Up there at Hogan’s Gap. 

They like to make it pretty strong 
Whenever there’s a charnce; 
So when a stranger comes along 
They always holds a dance. 

There’s recitations, songs, and fights— 
A willin’ lot you’ll meet. 
There’s one long bloke up there recites, 
I tell you—he’s a treat. 

They’re lively blokes all right up there, 
It’s never dull a day. 
I’d go meself if I could spare 
The time to get away. 

. . . . . 
The stranger turned his horses quick. 
He didn’t cross the bridge; 
He didn’t go along the crick 
To strike the second ridge; 

He didn’t make the trip, because 
He wasn’t feeling fit. 
His business up at Hogan’s was 
To serve him with a writ. 

He reckoned if he faced the pull 
And climbed the rocky stair, 
The next to come might find his hide 
A land-mark on the mountain side, 
Along with Hogan’s brindled bull 
And Hogan’s old grey mare!