Turbulence (Murray Hartin)

John The Aussie

This post is dedicated to the following “pussy” that is afraid to fly and hopefully will convince him into taking a trip down under.

In recent events I learnt that TheeUnseen is afraid to fly.  But while the fellow blogger thinks of himself road warrior, there are the warriors of the Australian Bushland.  Billy Hayes was his name and tough and rough as they come, the best of the best, gift of the gab, been to yonder and back to Woop Woop.  When I was just a kidlet living in Alice Springs going to the only Catholic School at the time, I happened to meet the man in the local markets, nothing extraordinary, no life changing moments, all I remember was him saying to me was “Ya gonna be a wild kid when you hit ya teens little fella.”

So I couldn’t dissapoint him and went on to fill my new dream.  Years later I learnt the sad news that Billy Hayes had passed away through a the local ABC radio station (Australian… and it’s our emergency channel – 630am)  But at his funeral the Australian bushpoet (whom many of that I follow thanks to my grandmother on my fathers side).  Billy Hayes really gave the man justice with his bush poem and the following mp3 was the actual recital during the funeral procession..

John The Aussie

Billy Hayes

(subtitles below for those who have trouble with the accent)


Here’s a tale of Billy Hays from out near Alice Springs

A wild young ringer, he’d done some crazy things

He’d bucked bulls over fences, rode a colt up Ayres Rock

See his legs weren’t made for walking they were made for riding stock

A legend round the rodeo from Allaroon to Broome

An untried horse at 6am was saddle broke by noon

No form of equine foolery he wasn’t game to try

Only one thing ever spooked him,

He was way too scared to fly.

Well if I was meant to fly he said

I’d have feathers and a beak,

You fly and waste a day and I’ll drive and waste a week

I hear they’re safe as houses and mechanically they’re sound

But I don’t see no rope or bridle so aye, I’m staying on the ground

One day Bill got a call from his mate in Adelaide,

He’d got his girl in trouble and the wedding cards were played

He said, Mate I don’t care how you do it you can beg or steel or borrow

But Mate you’re gunna have to catch the plane, coz the big day is tomorrow.

Billy cursed and spat it “That dopey bloody coot!

He knows I’ll jump on anything that’s coming out a chute

I’ve caught stallions that’d kill you, caught bulls gone off their brain

But I never thought there’d come a day I’d have to catch a plane!”

Bill legged it to the airport and thought “Well this is it”

The lady at the counter asked “Where would you like to sit?”

He said “You know that black box thing they always seem to find

“Well you can stick me right in side it if you wouldn’t bloody mind”

She gave a friendly smile and “Sir I’ll just take your bag”

He said “I don’t bloody think so, ‘n by the way it’s called a swag.”

Bill was sweatin’ buckets when they finally cleared the strip

He had his seatbelt on that tight he was bleedin’ from the hip

But when they levelled out he stopped shakin at the knees

Looked around , relaxed ‘n thought “This flyin’ game’s a breeze”

We clipped his belt undone, stretched out in his seat

Well he couldn’t stretch that much ’cause his swag was at his feet.

Then the captain crackled something, Bill asked the hostess what was said

“Sir you’d better buckle up there’s some turbulence ahead:

Turbulence – what’s that?” “Sir it’s pockets caused by heat

“And when it gets severe it can throw you from your seat.”

“Throw me, I’ll be buggered,” Bill pushed his seat right back,

Wrapped his legs around his swag and stuck his left hand through the strap

He jammed down his Akubra, he was ready now to ride

Then things got pretty bumpy and Billy yelled “Outside!”

The plane she dropped a thousand feet, bounced up five hundred more

When his head hit the roof, his backside hit the floor!

“I’ve rode all through the Territory and never come unstuck

So give me all you’ve got big bird – buck you bastard buck!”

And while the passengers were screaming in fear of certain death

Billy whooped and hollered ’til he near ran out of breath

You’d have thought that canvas swag was welded to his ass

And before the ringer knew it he’s bucked up to business class

There seemed no way to tame this creature, it had ten gears and reverse

But that didn’t worry Billy, he just bucked on through to first

He did somersaults with twists on this mongrel mount from hell

He yelled out to the pilot “for Christ sake ring the bell!”

Bill was bleeding from the bugle, he had cuts above both eyes

If you weren’t there on the spot ya probably think I’m tellin’ lies

He’d been upside down and inside out, done flips and triple spins

Ya might a’ seen some great rides in your time but hands down Billy wins

The flight returned to normal, Bill was flat out on the deck

Still stuck to his swag but he looked a bloody wreck

He pulled himself together, stood up straight and raised his hat

He said “I’ve had some tough trips in me day but never one like that.”

“an eight-second spin in Alice proves your made of sturdy stuff

But I was on there a near a minute and I reckon that’s enough.”

The first class folk were dumbstruck at this crazy ringer’s feat

but Bill just grabbed a crownie and walked back to his seat.

Now years have passed and Bill’s long give the buckin’ game away

Too many breaks and dusty miles for far too little pay

Now plane’s are not a worry, in fact he’d rather fly than ride

“N when you talk about his maiden voyage his chest puffs out with pride

“You can talk about your Rocky Neds or that old Chainsaw bloke

I’d ride ’em both without a rope and roll a bloody smoke

There’s cowboys ’round who think they’re hot, well they aint tasted heat

“Til they’ve ridden time on Turbulence at 30,000 feet.”
(Thanks to Murray Hartin and his site right here)


~ by John the Aussie on April 11, 2012.

18 Responses to “Turbulence (Murray Hartin)”

  1. Very cool story!

  2. that was so great. loved it

  3. That was a good read, now off to the Aussie/Canuck dictionary to do some translating.

  4. Hi there! Thank you for liking the “zombie post” on my blog (http://smilekiddo.wordpress.com/) – I appreciate it! 🙂

  5. Heh heh… I’ve heard that somewhere before. It’s a great story! No translation needed for me, though.

    And yet, somehow, I still don’t have that burning desire to take a plane anywhere… sorry mate. For now, I’ll stick to Australian documentaries and my Mad Max flix … lol!

    If I ever do get up the balls to fly to the Down Under, I’ll be sure and let you know first.

  6. I love it! =0)

  7. Words cannot describe just how big a grin on my face I got from hearing this. Thank you so very much for sharing.

    • Murray Hartin is an amazing bush poet. His humor is well recognized, another favourite modern bush poet of mine is Jean Lindley.

      I’m doing a some what half assed effort to keep people smiling or at least shaking their heads at dumb workers. Problem is people are finally wising up around the globe. I think I need convince the wife to post her family funnies, just to see the lacking side of myself. And probably enlist Leo for a few posts and her experiences with the people of ‘middle of bumfuck nowhere’.

      She’s hidden over at…


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