Grant McLennan of the go-betweens dies

Grant McLennan was one of the great Aussie songwriters
cane_fire_gordonvale
Originally uploaded by RaeA.

Grant McLennan was one of the great Aussie songwriters. I went off to university in 1974, a 1600 km train trip down the Queensland coast, and made the same trip up and back each year. As a result his song Cattle and Cane rang particular bells.

I recall a schoolboy coming home
through fields of cane
to a house of tin and timber
and in the sky
a rain of falling cinders
from time to time
the waste memory-wastes
I recall a boy in bigger pants
like everyone
just waiting for a chance
his father’s watch
he left it in the showers
from time to time
the waste memory-wastes
I recall a bigger brighter world
a world of books
and silent times in thought
and then the railroad
the railroad takes him home
through fields of cattle
through fields of cane
from time to time
the waste memory-wastes
the waste memory-wastes
further, longer, higher, older

“Cattle and cane” by Grant W. McLennan

ps. Came across this great article by Robert Forster 

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