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THE OUTLAW AND THE RIDER, by                    
First Line: He had come to umarella when the drought of '98
Last Line: "and jim was there astride him, fast asleep"
Subject(s): Animals;horses

HE had come to Umarella when the drought of '98
Had made Monara Plains a sea of sand,
And the philanthropic super., taking pity on his state,
Had given him a start as extra hand.

No doubt he'd been a wonder, for at night he'd sit for hours,
And boast of marvellous feats he'd seen and done,
How he'd won the Axeman's Trophy at the Show in Charters Towers,
And had killed a Syrian hawker just for fun.

How he rung the shed at Blackall, beating Howe by thirty sheep,
He'd broken outlaw horses in at night,
And in seven rounds at Gympie put O'Sullivan to sleep
With a blow for which he had the patent right.

Now we had a horse, an outlaw, bred on Umarella run,
No fiercer colt had ever stretched the reins,
He had thrown Monara Billy and the station breaker, Dunne,
And was reckoned bad throughout the southern plains.

The Skipper came down strolling—we had planned the joke of course—
"I've letters here, must catch the mail," he said;
"You had better take them, Jimmy, you can ride the chestnut horse,
But mind him or he'll have you on your head."

Now, Jim threw on the saddle and the colt stood like a sheep
One moment and we thought our joke would fail,
But Jim was barely seated when the colt he gave a leap,
And went at it like a demon through the rails.

Down the lane we followed and we opened wide our eyes
To see Jim like a perfect horseman sit,
He would fetch the stockwhip round him every time the colt would rise,
And would tease him with the spurs whene'er he lit.

We made a rush for horses, down the lane we followed fast,
To see our outlaw thrashed was something new,
But when we reached the clump of trees where we had seen him last,
Both horse and man had disappeared from view.

For miles the track we followed, and for days we sought in vain,
All was bustle, horsemen riding here and there,
From the cattle camp on Kindra to the farms on Little Plain,
We searched the rugged country in despair.

The days to weeks had lengthened, still no tidings came to hand,
We felt all hope of finding them was lost,
Till a party searching eastward saw some footprints in the sand,
Showing plainly that a horse had lately crossed.

So we tracked along the hoof-marks where once deep grasses grew,
And on a flat hemmed in by gorges deep
We found that chestnut bucking still for all he ever knew,
And Jim was there astride him, fast asleep.

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