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Daley's Dorg 'Wattle'

William Thomas Goodge 1862 – 1909

"You can talk about yer sheep dorgs," said the man from Allan's Creek,
  "But I know a dorg that simply knocked 'em bandy! -
Do whatever you would show him, and you'd hardly need to speak;
  Owned by Daley, drover cove in Jackandandy.

"We was talkin' in the parlour, me and Daley, quiet like,
  When a blow-fly starts a-buzzin' round the ceilin',
Up gets Daley, and he says to me, 'You wait a minute, Mike,
  And I'll show you what a dorg he is at heelin'.'

"And an empty pickle-bottle was a-standin' on the shelf,
  Daley takes it down and puts it on the table,
And he bets me drinks that blinded dorg would do it by himself -
  And I didn't think as how as he was able!

"Well, he shows the dorg the bottle, and he points up to the fly,
  And he shuts the door, and says to him - 'Now Wattle!'
And in less than fifteen seconds, spare me days, it ain't a lie,
  That there dorg had got that insect in the bottle."

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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William Thomas Goodge

William Thomas Goodge (28 September 1862 – 28 November 1909) was an English writer and journalist, who arrived in Australia in 1882, after jumping ship in Sydney. He worked in various jobs in New South Wales, including as a coal-miner, until he was engaged to write for "The Tribune" in North Sydney, a small weekly associated with the "Daily Telegraph". From there he was chosen by Harry Newman (Member of Parliament and newspaper proprietor) to edit "The Leader" newspaper in Orange, NSW. Goodge remained in Orange, becoming part-owner of "The Leader" at some point, until in the early 1900s he returned to Sydney and began writing for that city's newspapers, especially "The Sunday Times". Goodge was first married on 21 January 1892. His wife died 3 January 1895 of typhoid, leaving behind two children. Sometime later he remarried and had another child. Goodge died on 28 November 1909 in North Sydney. During his writing career, Goodge wrote mainly light-verse poems and short stories. Although he did have one novel, The Fortunes of Fenchurch, serialised in the pages of The Sunday Times, the book was never published separately. His best known works were "The Great Australian Adjective", and "The Oozlum Bird". Norman Lindsay, who illustrated the reprint volume of Goodge's only poetry collection, considered the poet better than C. J. Dennis. "Goodge, with his Hits! Skits! and Jingles!, is a much better light-verse writer than Dennis, and his book should be reprinted."  more…

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