The horses stay behind…

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old; 

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning

We will remember them.


Today we take pause to remember those who sacrificed their lives to protect our country, those who left behind their loved ones to go to lands far away to fight for our freedom. Today while we remember those brave men and women, let us also remember the animals who also made the ultimate sacrifice. 

“THE HORSES STAY BEHIND”

In days to come we’ll wander west and cross the range again;

We’ll hear the bush birds singing in the green trees after rain;

We’ll canter through the Mitchell grass and breast the bracing wind:

But we’ll have other horses. Our chargers stay behind.

Around the fire at night we’ll yarn about old Sinai;

We’ll fight our battles o’er again; and as the days go by

There’ll be old mates to greet us. The bush girls will be kind,

Still our thoughts will often wander to the horses left behind.

I don’t think l could stand the thought of my fancy hack

Just crawling ’round old Cairo with a ‘Gyppo on his back.

Perhaps some English tourist out in Palestine, may find

My broken hearted Waler with a wooden plough behind.

NO; I think l’d better shoot him and tell a little lie:

“He floundered in a wombat hole and then lay down to die.”

Maybe l’ll get court-martialled; but l’m damned if l’m inclined

To go back to Australia and leave my horse behind.

~ Trooper Bluegum

Further reading:

https://www.awm.gov.au/wartime/44/page54_bou/

https://www.awm.gov.au/encyclopedia/horses/

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-04-25/australian-wwi-war-horse-breed-waler-still-being-bred/5412402

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