The Flour Bin

By Lawson's Hill, near Mudgee,
On old Eurunderee –
The place they called "New Pipeclay",
Where the diggers used to be –
On a dreary old selection,
Where times were dry and thin,
In a slab and shingle kitchen
There stood a flour bin.

'Twas "ploorer" with the cattle,
'Twas rust and smut in wheat,
'Twas blight in eyes and orchards,
And coarse salt-beef to eat.
Oh, how our mothers struggled
Till eyes and brain were dull –
Oh, how our fathers slaved and toiled
To keep those flour bins full!

We've been in many countries,
We've sailed on many seas;
We've travelled in the steerage
And lived on land at ease.
We've seen the world together
Through laughter and through tears –
And not been far from baker's bread
These five and thirty years.

The flats are green as ever,
The creeks go rippling through;
The Mudgee Hills are showing
Their deepest shades of blue;
Those mountains in the distance
That ever held a charm
Are fairer than a picture
As seen from Cox's farm.

On a German farm by Mudgee,
That took long years to win,
On the wide bricked back verandah
There stands a flour bin;
And the dear old German lady –
Though the bakers' carts run out –
Still keeps a "fifty" in it
Against a time of drought.

It was my father made it,
It stands as good as new,
And of the others like it
There still remain a few.
God grant, when drought shall strike us,
The young will "take a pull",
And the old folk their strength anew
To keep those flour bins full.

by Henry Lawson

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