Some time ago, I wrote a song. Two actually, but for now, it’s all about the one. As you’re about to discover, one’s enough! Back then, it wasn’t so much about smiling faces on the cover of the ‘Rolling Stone’. Rather, there was a tangle of unruly words that bugged the bejeesus out of me until they all fell in line. Soon after, they were entered into the 2021 ASA (Oz songwriters Asc) contest in Lyrics (To Hang Yourself By!!) And…surprise, surprise, made the top thirty! (Which probably put a smile on the faces of the other 29 entrants too!)
Meanwhile, I toyed with some simple chords and melodies, then recorded myself on my I-phone. If my song made the top ten on ASA’s virtual awards night, I’d be ready for Starmaker the following year at Tamworth.
The recording proved to be a gift to the world. Not a soul on earth, apart from Heidy the Huntsman who scurried behind the sliding kitchen door, will ever again witness such a performance. To my ear as I barred F sharp and E, then fingerpicked A to Asus with arthritic fingers, I was John-boy crooning ‘Flower on the Water’ or ‘Raining on the Rock’. My phone said ‘no, you are Darren Lockyer croaking for assistance from the depths of Brisbane’s sewer. (Apologies to Darren since he at least croaks in tune).
And so… Now that I’ve heard me, I’ve to decided to post, and bury. Read if you want, have the noose handy.
Bush Beddin’ Down
Here I rest at day’s end,
Watch the sun go down,
Mm mmm, go down
Through the gidgee the cries,
To and fro, the galahs,
The sounds o’ the bush beddin’ down.
There’s a click and a whirr, that ol’ fan just ain’t right,
First moths flitter into the light
They’re the sounds that sooth when you’re left all alone,
The sounds o’ the bush beddin’ down
There’s a fresh cross the causeway,
Seems years since she’s run,
Mm mm, seems years
Sweet water, sweet memories,
I hear laughter again,
‘long the banks where our first love began
And the echoes grow faint
As the brolgas take flight,
And the supplejacks sigh as the day turns to night,
And the shadows come creeping once more,
Like old friends, they’re keepin’ the score.
Down the flat, the thud of hoof-beats,
Soft on the loam,
Mm mm, comin’ home,
Comes old Gypsy like clock-work,
She seeks higher ground,
A sandy-patch to rest her weary bones
For wherever our song began,
There’s a place it surely ends,
And the moon and the stars above,
Hold the rhythm of the last refrain
And they say all good things must pass,
Mm mm, let ‘em go,
Set me free, this old husk,
Let me be….
Free at last
So when the sun’s dippin’ low,
And the night breezes blow,
You’ll hear my laughter,
‘mongst the sounds o’ the bush beddin’ down
We’ll be laughin’,
With the sounds o’ the bush beddin’ down.