Are You The Cove


CLASSIC BUSH VERSE – FREEDOM ON THE WALLABY

Are You the Cove?

“TOM COLLINS’ JOSEPH FURPHY

Hard-bitten swagmen were known as ‘sundowners’ because they always arrived at the station-door around sunset, to avoid the menial jobs usually exchanged for tucker rations. In this poem by the author of the classic book ‘Such Is Life’, our swagman attempts a clever routine to better the somewhat exasperated squatter.

“Are you the Cove?” he spoke the words
As swagmen only can;
The Squatter freezingly inquired,
“What do you mean, my man?”

“Are you the Cove?” his voice was stern,
His look was firm and keen;
Again the Squatter made reply,
“I don’t know what you mean.”

“0! dash my rags! let’s have some sense –
You ain’t a fool, by Jove,
Gammon you dunno what I mean;
I mean – are you the Cove?’

‘Yes, I’m the Cove,” the Squatter said;
The Swagman answered, “Right,
I thought as much: show me some place
Where I can doss tonight.”