[ In the early 1890's, Henry Lawson tramped to Hungerford which inspired him to
write a short story on his reflections. In the 1980's I was part of a team
connecting Hungerford to the electricity grid and write the following by way of
You've tramped the hungry road from Bourke
Up North to border gate,
A country lad in want of work
With Gordon your old mate.
Then camped the night in Hungerford
Beside the old Paroo.
I sensed that you were not impressed,
You're not among the few.
I had a chance to work there once
To build a power line,
And saw myself what you had seen,
The privilege was mine.
The rabbits are still there you know,
On both sides of the fence;
Though myxo slowed them down a bit,
They're now not quite as dense.
Two pubs have been reduced to one
Still on the Queensland side.
The store is but an old shell now,
Where cats and mice abide.
That hungry old dirt road you tramped
Now runs right through the town;
From New South Wales to Queensland, mate,
Folk travel up and down.
Town water has not changed since then,
'Tis red as mother earth,
And though folks there are used to it,
I gave a bath wide berth.
Post Office building stands there too,
But not the New South side,
While local law enforcers still
In Queensland do reside.
I never met old Clancy mate,
Though met a jackaroo;
When asked of work conditions there
He'd Clancy's point of view.
The houses are all much the same,
I guess they'll never grow,
But now they've got the power there,
One really doesn't know.
Your sentiment was right my friend
On how some toughed it out,
Those men who travelled 'cross this land,
Before towns came about.
No doubt someone in future years
Will pass this way again,
Who may reflect on what we saw,
And write down some refrain.