Poem – Buffalo Country – Banjo Paterson

Out where the grey streams glide, 

Sullen and deep and slow, 

And the alligators slide 

From the mud to the depths below 

Or drift on the stream like a floating death, 

Where the fever comes on the south wind’s breath, 

There is the buffalo. 

Out of the big lagoons, 

Where the Regia lilies float, 

And the Nankin heron croons 

With a deep ill-omened note, 

In the ooze and the mud of the swamps below 

Lazily wallows the buffalo, 

Buried to nose and throat. 
From the hunter’s gun he hides 

In the jungle’s dark and damp, 

Where the slinking dingo glides 

And the flying foxes camp; 

Hanging like myriad fiends in line 

Where the trailing creepers twist and twine 

And the sun is a sluggish lamp. 
On the edge of the rolling plains 

Where the coarse cane grasses swell, 

Lush with the tropic rains 

In the noontide’s drowsy spell, 

Slowly the buffalo grazes through 

Where the brolgas dance, and the jabiru 

Stands like a sentinel. 
All that the world can know 

Of the wild and the weird is here, 

Where the black men come and go 

With their boomerang and spear, 

And the wild duck darken the evening sky 

As they fly to their nests in the reed beds high 

When the tropic night is near.