William Thomas Goodge

(1862 - 1909 / Australia)

Biography of William Thomas Goodge

William Thomas Goodge poet

William Thomas Goodge was born in London in 1862, the son of a Law Courts clerk. and arrived in Sydney in 1882 after working his passage aboard the ship 'The Cathay' as a steward. His first job on his arrival in Sydney was with one of Cobb & Co's properties - Windagee Station in Western New South Wales.

He roamed around outback New South Wales for twelve years before settling into life as a jounalist.He began to contribute verses to the Dubbo Express and later was offered a full-time job as a reporter and writer of verse for the Lithgow Mercury. For a time he was Editor of the Orange Leader while contributing to the now famous Bulletin. For the nine years prior to his death he wrote a weekly piece for the Sydney Truth concerning the actions of an imaginery drinking group, the Gimcrack Club. During his lifetime he published only one collection of poems: Hits! Skits! and Jingles! in 1899. Norman Lindsay considered him one of Australia's best writers of light verse.

A prolific and highly respected writer, W.T. Goodge died suddenly in Sydney in 1909 aged forty seven.

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The Shearer's Cook

Now, shearers' cooks, as shearers know,
Are very seldom wont to blow;
But when I took to dabbing tar
And "picking-up" on Blaringar,
The cook, when "barbers" came at morn
To get a snack, would say, with scorn:
"Tea on the left,
Coffee on the right,
Brownie on the bunk, and blast yez!"

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