BETA

The first two words of the title, “KATE CUNNINGHAM’S”, are placed on a banner. The words are separated by a woman’s head. The final word of the title, “RIDE”, is placed to the right of the banner. 1/6 page.

Kate Cunningham’s Ride

Decorated initial letter “Y” is placed on a scroll. A branch extends from behind the scroll, above and below it. The banner connects to the border that contains the poem. 1/64 page.
YEARS have passed since my girlhood’s prime1
Some in sorrow and some in glee2
But I never remember such a time3
As the summer of ’F ifty-three.4
The land was parched and fainting with drought ;5
The flocks were dying on Banalong ;—6
And they came and told us the blacks were out7
On a raid—two hundred strong.8
They had burnt the station at Barrington’s Bay,—9
They had speared Jim Robertson and his wife,—10
And young Dick Wallace rode night and day,11
And just escaped with his life.12
A man on a horse. He is looking towards two women and a baby that are standing in a doorway. He is pointing behind him towards an unidentifiable location. The poem is partially placed within two single-ruled borders and is a separate graphic unit from the illustration. However, parts of the illustration extend within the border. 1/4 page.
He reined his reeking horse at our gate,13
And shouted aloud to mother and me,14
Take the kids, and come, or you’ll be too late15
They’re crossing by Gundaree ! ”16
Father was out on the upper run17
Forty miles, as the crow might fly18
Warning must reach him by set of sun :19
There was none to ride but I !20
I brought out the horses—black Gypsy the mare21
For me—and for mother the tall old roan.22
She mounted with baby—Dick had Clare,—23
Good-bye ! ”—I was off alone.24
Off we went o’er the crisp, burnt grass,25
And through the paddocks, and met no soul,26
And crossed the level, to Scrub-Oak Pass27
And the dried-up waterhole.28
We’d got half-way through the Mallee scrub29
On Marriott’s land, with nothing to fear30
When I thought I saw the end of a club,31
And heard the whizz of a spear.32
A woman on a horse that is mid-gallop. There are arrows flying around her. 1/3 page.
Then I gathered my skirts, and set my teeth33
I durst not look unto either side :—34
I knew it was riding for life and death35
And I’d reach that run, though I died.36
I dropped the reins on my beauty’s neck37
I drove my boot-heel into her flank,—38
Already the foam began to fleck39
Her sides, as they heaved and sank.40
Whish ! . . . Had it hit her ? . . . It stuck in a tree,41
Five yards ahead . . . I bent, and looked down ;—42
She never slackened her pace. . . . Ah me !—43
There was blood on the edge of my gown.44
Oh ! Gypsy lass !  Oh ! my darling ! ” I cried45
It’s death to him if we faint or fail !46
Oh ! help us, God ! ”—and that minute I spied47
The shepherd’s hut within hail.48
Not a moment too soon, for another spear49
I knew it, though I seemed deaf and blind50
Struck her—another flew past my ear,51
And I heard them yelling behind.52
Everything seemed to whirl and flash53
I wondered, was I alive or dead ?54
And Gypsy came to the ground with a crash,55
And I went over her head.56
I caught a glimpse of a man at the door,57
I was up—cried wildly, sobbing for breath,58
It will be too late in a minute more :59
A horse !— it’s for life or death ! ”60
I stood and stared at the brave bright face61
The keen blue eyes and the curly head,62
Dazed, unseeing, a moment’s space.63
And I don’t know what I said.64
A woman has fallen off of a horse. She is propped up on her right arm and her left arm is reaching out towards the horse. The horse is mid-fall and has an arrow piercing its back. 1/4 page.
Wait here a minute—sit down and rest,—65
You must save your strength for their sakes, you know ! ”66
But, mad with the fire in my brain and breast,67
I cried, “ I can’t ! I must go ! ”68
He went and brought his own dapple-gray horse,69
And shifted the gear from mine as she lay,70
And lifted me into the saddle perforce.71
I faltered— “ I’ve nothing to pay72
But father will settle it one of these days,”73
And I saw the swift blood flush to his brow,74
And, “ Pay ! ” he cried with his eyes ablaze75
Who’s talking of that just now ? ”76
Then—I don’t know what it was that smote77
On my brain—and my eyes began to swim,—78
But I loosed the handkerchief from my throat,79
And tossed it over to him.80
God keep you ! ” “ Good-bye ! ” With a thundering rush81
The good gray started. One last glance back :—82
He stood, loading his gun, in the sunset-flush,—83
And hearkened adown the track.84
A woman is riding on a horse. A man is standing and watching her. Their arms are raised, as if greeting each other. He is holding a gun. 1/8 page partially contained by a single-ruled rectangular border that extends to border the bottom of a group of stanzas; poem is a separate graphic unit.
A woman and a man look at each other and embrace. The woman has her arms on the man’s shoulders, and the man holds on to her arms, supporting her. A gun lies on the ground beside the man and a saddled horse stands behind them in the distance. Trees and a hill are in the background. 2/3 page contained by a single-ruled circular border. Poem is partially contained within a single-ruled border that overlaps the illustration; poem is a separate graphic unit.
We had crossed the bound of Marriott’s lot,—85
We had leapt the fence of the upper run,—86
Far down the gully I heard a shot ;87
Then all was still : I had won.88
Father ! ”— “ Why, Kitty, what’s up, dear lass ? ”89
I knew not till then I was scared to death,—90
But there, like a fool, I sat on the grass,91
And laughed and cried in a breath.92
But no time to lose !— He saddled up,93
We took the track to the north of the ridge,94
And by dawn we had passed Koagulup,95
And were safe beyond the bridge.96
And Marriott’s shepherd ? When they could start97
For the hut on the run. . . . You know the rest :98
He’s the man they found with a spear in his heart,99
And my handkerchief on his breast.100