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Poetry is integral to the Millamolong brand. Here we've collected a few poems we love (particularly Banjo Patterson who's 150th anniversary is in 2014).

These poems have either been hung in the Millamolong clubhouse for years or date back to the four Ashton brothers.

The famous poem The Man From Iron Bark was first recited by Banjo Patterson at a polo match in the 1920's - and recently reenacted at a ground in Sydney. 

Polo - Millamolong Polo Club Style

To mark the 25th anniversary

Bring me a pint of your best ‘Badland’s’ beer
And for m' lady, ‘Angulong’ wine— will bring her good cheer!
And maybe a mug of ‘Bills Beans’ coffee for you
Whilst of polo- humour me, and I'll tell you a tale or two…

The rules, they are simple- to avoid a quick death,
You’ll need derring-do, horse sense, the ability to guess,
what four opposing, accomplished and slick horsemen will try,
to unsettle you, hassle you, ‘til your tank runneth dry…

For polo is fast- it is seriously quick,
(you try riding a half ton of pure muscle, while hitting small ball with a stick)
While your mate’s busy colliding into his opponent at pace,
their shoulders jostling to push each other out of the race

Another team-mate’s corralling his opposite away-
“Clear the way for the Back”- he shoots at goal- and we pray,
that his aim may be true,
his seat not too horrid,
that his line is correct,
his horse’s footing be solid.

These are the variables at play on the field,
most polo players from busters off horses have healed,
’Tis the gasp of spectators watching thrills and spills on the deck,
that define what is polo- “Rougher than rugby, and Better than Sex!

 

THE GEEBUNG POLO CLUB

by A.B. "Banjo" Paterson

 

 

It was somewhere up the country in a land of rock and scrub,
That they formed an institution called the Geebung Polo Club.
They were long and wiry natives of the rugged mountainside,
And the horse was never saddled that the Geebungs couldn't ride;
But their style of playing polo was irregular and rash -
They had mighty little science, but a mighty lot of dash:
And they played on mountain ponies that were muscular and strong,
Though their coats were quite unpolished, and their manes and tails were long.
And they used to train those ponies wheeling cattle in the scrub:
They were demons, were the members of the Geebung Polo Club.

It was somewhere down the country, in a city's smoke and steam,
That a polo club existed, called the Cuff and Collar Team.
As a social institution 'twas a marvellous success,
For the members were distinguished by exclusiveness and dress.
They had natty little ponies that were nice, and smooth, and sleek,
For their cultivated owners only rode 'em once a week.
So they started up the country in pursuit of sport and fame,
For they meant to show the Geebungs how they ought to play the game;
And they took their valets with them - just to give their boots a rub
Ere they started operations on the Geebung Polo Club.

Now my readers can imagine how the contest ebbed and flowed,
When the Geebung boys got going it was time to clear the road;
And the game was so terrific that ere half the time was gone
A spectator's leg was broken - just from merely looking on.
For they waddied one another till the plain was strewn with dead,
While the score was kept so even that they neither got ahead.
And the Cuff and Collar captain, when he tumbled off to die,
Was the last surviving player - so the game was called a tie.

Then the captain of the Geebungs raised him slowly from the ground,
Though his wounds were mostly mortal, yet he fiercely gazed around;
There was no one to oppose him - all the rest were in a trance,
So he scrambled on his pony for his last expiring chance,
For he meant to make an effort to get victory to his side;
So he struck at goal - and missed it - then he tumbled off and died.

By the old Campaspe River, where the breezes shake the grass,
There's a row of little gravestones that the stockmen never pass,
For they bear a crude inscription saying, "Stranger, drop a tear,
For the Cuff and Collar players and the Geebung boys lie here."
And on misty moonlit evenings, while the dingoes howl around,
You can see their shadows flitting down that phantom polo ground;
You can hear the loud collisions as the flying players meet,
And the rattle of the mallets, and the rush of ponies' feet,
Till the terrified spectator rides like blazes to the pub -
He's been haunted by the spectres of the Geebung Polo Club.

 

THE HOOVES OF THE HORSES

The hooves of the horses as bewitching and sweet
As the music earth feels from the iron shod feet
No whisper of lover, no trilling of birds
Can stir me as hooves of the horses have stirred
 
They spurn disappointment and trample despair
And drown with their drum beat the challenge of car
With scarlet and silk for their banners above
They are swifter than fortune and sweeter than love
 
On the wings of the morning they gather and fly
In the hush of the night time I hear them go by
The horses of memory thundering through
With flashing white fetlocks all wet with the dew
 
When they lay me to slumber no spot you can choose
But will sing to the rhythm of galloping shoes
And under the daisies no grave be so deep
But the hooves of the horses shall sound in my sleep

Will Ogilvie

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