Saltbush Bill, J.P. is a humorous poem by Australian writer and poet Andrew Barton "Banjo" Paterson. It was first published in The Evening News on 16 December 1905.[1]

Saltbush Bill was one of Paterson's best known characters who appeared in 5 poems: "Saltbush Bill" (1894), "Saltbush Bill's Second Fight" (1897), "Saltbush Bill's Gamecock" (1898), "Saltbush Bill on the Patriarchs" (1903), and "Saltbush Bill, J.P." (1905).[2]

Plot summary edit

After a long life of droving Saltbush Bill is appointed a J.P. (Justice of the Peace). But he is disappointed to find no mention of pay until he discovers, in his contract, the line "A magistrate may charge a pound/For inquest on a fire." Bill and the local indigenous population collude to make good use of this provision.[1]

Further publications edit

  • Saltbush Bill, J.P., and Other Verses by Banjo Paterson (1917)
  • Along the Western Road : Bush Stories and Ballads (1981)
  • Song of the Pen, A. B. (Banjo) Paterson : Complete Works 1901-1941 edited by Rosamund Campbell and Philippa Harvie (1983)
  • A Vision Splendid : The Complete Poetry of A. B. 'Banjo' Paterson (1990)
  • The Collected Verse of Banjo Paterson (1992)

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ a b Austlit - "Saltbush Bill, J.P." by A. B. Paterson
  2. ^ The Oxford Companion to Australian Literature, 2nd edition, p670