When the Rain Tumbles Down in July
Slim Dusty Lyrics


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Let me wander north to the ho-omestead
Way out further on there to roam
By a gully in flood, let me linger
When the summery sunshine has flown

Where the logs tangle up on the creek beds
And clouds fill the old northern sky
And the cattle move back from the lowlands
When the rain tumbles down in July

The settlers with sad hearts are watching
The rise of the stream from the dawn
Their best crops are always in flood reach
If it rises much more they'll be gone

The cattle string out along the fences
The wind from the south races by
And the limbs from the old gums are fallen
When the rain tumbles down in July

The sleeping gums on the hillside
Awaken to herds strayin' by
Here on the flats where the fences have vanished
As the storm clouds gather on high

The wheels of the wagons stop turning
The stock horse is turned out to stray
The old station dogs are a-dozin'
On the husks in the barn through the day

The drover draws rein by the river
And it's years since he's seen it so high




Yes and that's just a story of homeward
When the rain tumbles down in July

Overall Meaning

The song ‘When the Rain Tumbles Down in July’ by Slim Dusty is a beautiful ode to the Australian countryside, where he describes how the rains in July transform the landscape. Slim Dusty longs to wander north to the homestead and roam further out by a gully in flood when the summery sunshine has flown. As he walks towards the creek beds, he sees logs tangled up, and the northern sky filled with clouds. The cattle move back from the lowlands as the rain tumbles down in July. The settlers with sad hearts watch the rise of the stream from the dawn as their best crops are always in flood reach.


The song is full of vivid imagery that captures the beauty and struggle of life on the land in Australia. As the storm clouds gather, the sleeping gums on the hillside awaken to herds strayin' by. The fences have vanished, and the wheels of the wagons stop turning. The stock horse is turned out to stray, and the old station dogs are a-dozin' on the husks in the barn through the day. The drover draws rein by the river, and it's been years since he's seen it so high. These beautiful words of Slim Dusty convey the emotions and experiences of those who live in the beautiful Australian countryside, where they wait for rain to come and transform their land.


Line by Line Meaning

Let me wander north to the ho-omestead
I want to travel north to the homestead


Way out further on there to roam
I want to venture even further from home


By a gully in flood, let me linger
I want to stay near a flooded creek bed


When the summery sunshine has flown
I want to be there after the summer sun has set


Where the logs tangle up on the creek beds
There are logs that have gotten tangled up in the creek beds


And clouds fill the old northern sky
The northern sky is full of clouds


And the cattle move back from the lowlands
The cattle return from the lowlands


When the rain tumbles down in July
When it rains heavily in July


The settlers with sad hearts are watching
The settlers are watching with sadness


The rise of the stream from the dawn
They can see the stream rising from daybreak


Their best crops are always in flood reach
Their best crops are always at risk of being flooded


If it rises much more they'll be gone
If the water rises more, their crops will be ruined


The cattle string out along the fences
The cattle are spread out along the fences


The wind from the south races by
The strong wind from the south is blowing by


And the limbs from the old gums are fallen
The branches from the old gum trees are falling


When the rain tumbles down in July
When it rains heavily in July


The sleeping gums on the hillside
The gum trees on the hillside are dormant


Awaken to herds strayin' by
But the gum trees come to life as they see the stray herds


Here on the flats where the fences have vanished
Here, where the fences are no longer visible on the flats


As the storm clouds gather on high
The storm clouds are gathering up in the sky


The wheels of the wagons stop turning
The wheels of the wagons have come to a halt


The stock horse is turned out to stray
The stock horse is let out to roam around


The old station dogs are a-dozin'
The old station dogs are sleeping


On the husks in the barn through the day
They are sleeping on the leftover grain in the barn during the day


The drover draws rein by the river
The drover stops by the river


And it's years since he's seen it so high
It has been years since he has seen the river this high


Yes and that's just a story of homeward
And that is just a tale of his journey back home


When the rain tumbles down in July
When it rains heavily in July




Writer(s): David Kirkpatrick

Contributed by Chloe Y. Suggest a correction in the comments below.
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Most interesting comment from YouTube:

Skylar UTD

Let me wander north to the homestead,
Way out further on there to roam,
By a gully in flood let me linger,
When the summery sunshine has flown.
Where the logs tangle up on the creek bed,
And clouds veil the old northern sky,
And the cattle move back from the lowlands,
When the rain tumbles down in July.
The settlers with sad hearts are watching,
The rise of the stream from the dawn,
Their best crops are always in flood reach,
If it rises much more they'll be gone.
The cattle string out along the fences,
The wind from the south races by,
And the limbs from the old gums are fallin',
When the rain tumbles down in July.
The sleeping gums on the hillside,
Awaken to herds straying by,
From the flats where the fences have vanished,
As the storm clouds gather on high.
The wheels of the wagons stop turning,
The stock horse is turned out to stray,
The old station dogs are a dozin',
On the husks in the barn through the day.
The drover draws rein by the river,
It's years since he's seen it so high,
Yes and that's just a story of homeward,
When the rain tumbles down in July.



All comments from YouTube:

Howard Halifax

One of Mick Taylor's favourites.

Mick Taylor

It is ;)

Howard Halifax

@Mick Taylor G'day Mick, ya murderin' mungrel.

Mick Taylor

@Howard Halifax G'day mate. How ya doin?

Swanihilator

@Howard Halifax After this conversation, he was never seen again.

6 More Replies...

Andy Hiron

i listened to this song for twenty years as one i could never get sick of,and once it ended up on wolf creek 2,it really made my day

ItzLenny

I'm putting this music on next time a cop pulls me over.

sortskovmejse

Haha damn

Victor Kramer

mate you sure you wanna give me this ?

Cody Crogan

Bet your life.

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