The Saltbush Plain

Spring's just 'round the corner boys
And shearing's on again
Five million sheep that must be shorn
Out on the saltbush plain
The shearers come from everywhere
From near and far away
To hear once more the whirr of shears
And the shouts of "wool away"
From way up north at Longreach
To down south at Warrnambool
They come with one objective
That's to shear away the wool
There's the Guns and there's the Snaggers
The Pressers and the Cooks
The Rousies and the Classers
And the men who keep the books
They're shearing at Eurolie
At Gunbar and Toganmain
At a hundred sheds both big and small
Out on the saltbush plain
As Paterson said before me
Some fifty years ago
The Saltbush Plain is a wonderland
For those that really know
Us shearers feel the same way
That's why we're back again
To get our hands among the wool
Out on the Saltbush Plain
The little pubs like Booligal
Conargo, Carrathool
Are favourite meeting places
Of the men who shear the wool
They gather there on Friday night
To share a glass of brew
To meet old friends, make new ones
And to shear a sheep or two
At every pub, in every town
From Finley out to Hay
They need two Pressers in the bar
To keep the wool away
The learners shear two hundred
And the Rousies top the ton
It's easy shearing in the bar
Where everyone's a Gun
If you've never been a shearer
It's not easy to explain
Why we leave our homes and families
And head for Hay again
But you would know if you've been there
And you've had your comb real full
Way out here on the Saltbush Plain
With your hands amongst the wool
So roll your swags up tight boys
And we'll hit the road for Hay
To hear once more the whirr of shears
And the shouts of "wool away"
We'll all pull into gear again
And keep our comb real full
Way out here on the Saltbush Plain
With our hands among the wool

© - Kevin Magher