Australian Folk Songs

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Song of the Engine Driver (1907)

I love the feel of the throttle.
The glare of the raging fire,
The whirl and grip
When the drivers slip
And the sand gets under the tire ;

The purr of the thinned exhaust,
The lurch from side to side
As I hook her back
To centre rack
And open the throttle wide ;

The long swift glide up the grade.
With the wind of night in mu hair
The power I feel
O'er the quivering steel
When she checks as I give her the "air" ;

The rush under bridge, over stream,
The whirl past cottage and farm :
The anxious gaze
Through the headlight's blaze
For the gleam from a semaphore arm.

Then I let her drift through the yard
And down from my seat I climb ;
A slave to mv hands--
She, panting, stands
At her journey's end--on time.

--J. G. Sanderson.


From the WA Newspaper the Westralian Worker Friday 15 March 1907 p. 8.


australian traditional songs . . . a selection by mark gregory