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> Heny Lawson, Australian Bush Poet
Arnfinn
post Nov 5 05, 05:51
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The Separation


Henry Lawson was born in a tent on the Grenfell goldfields in 1867. His father was a Norse sailor who became a digger; his mother came of a Kentish family of gypsy blood and tradition. Henry spent his boy hood on old mining fields, and on a selection his father had taken up. Later, he came to Sydney and learned coach-painting, attended night school and was caught up in the wave of socialism. In 1884, at the age of seventeen, his poetry was published in the Bulletin a Sydney publication. He died an alcoholic in a convalescent hospital in 1922. The Prime Minister afforded him a state funeral in recognition of his literary genius.


The Separation

We knew too little of the world,
And you and I were good—
But paltry bickerings wrecked our lives
As well I knew they would.
The people said our love was dead,
But how were they to know?
Ah! Had we loved each other less
We’d not have quarrelled so.

We knew too little of the world,
And you and I were kind,
We listened to what others said
And both of us were blind.
The people said `twas selfishness,
But how were they to know?
Ah! Had we both been selfish then
We’d not have parted so.

But still, when all seems lost on earth
Then heaven sets a sign—
Kneel down beside your lonely bed,
And I will kneel by mine,
And let us pray for happy days—
Like those of long ago.
Ah! had we knelt together once
We’d not have parted so.


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Arnfinn
post May 20 06, 07:58
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I thought I would add another poem, Lawson was a socialist, he had a strong affinity with the working man.

Here is a poem about early Australia and mateship.

I hope you like.


The Glass on the Bar

Apr.—1890

Henry Lawson

THREE bushmen one morning rode up to an inn,
And one of them called for the drinks with a grin;
They’d only returned from a trip to the North,
And, eager to greet them, the landlord came forth.
He absently poured out a glass of Three Star.
And set down that drink with the rest on the bar.

‘There, that is for Harry,’ he said, ‘and it’s queer,
’Tis the very same glass that he drank from last year;
His name’s on the glass, you can read it like print,
He scratched it himself with an old piece of flint;
I remember his drink—it was always Three Star’—
And the landlord looked out through the door of the bar.

He looked at the horses, and counted but three:
‘You were always together—where’s Harry?’ cried he.
Oh, sadly they looked at the glass as they said,
‘You may put it away, for our old mate is dead;’
But one, gazing out o’er the ridges afar,
Said, ‘We owe him a shout—leave the glass on the bar.’

They thought of the far-away grave on the plain,
They thought of the comrade who came not again,
They lifted their glasses, and sadly they said:
‘We drink to the name of the mate who is dead.’
And the sunlight streamed in, and a light like a star
Seemed to glow in the depth of the glass on the bar.

And still in that shanty a tumbler is seen,
It stands by the clock, ever polished and clean;
And often the strangers will read as they pass
The name of a bushman engraved on the glass;
And though on the shelf but a dozen there are,
That glass never stands with the rest on the bar.



John


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Arnfinn

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Peterpan
post Aug 17 06, 08:47
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His writing is an inspiration!

Thank you for sharing this with us.

PP flamingo.gif


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Arnfinn
post Aug 26 06, 02:45
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Hi Bev,

Hope your feeling better. wave.gif


gardener.gif


I agee with your comments. I very fond of this poet. troy.gif


Regards,


John


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Arnfinn

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more details, click here!

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jgdittier
post Feb 9 07, 11:16
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QUOTE (Peterpan @ Aug 17 06, 13:47 ) *
His writing is an inspiration!

Thank you for sharing this with us.

PP flamingo.gif


Bush poets just seem to be more human.
Cheers, Ron jgd


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Arnfinn
post Feb 12 07, 05:53
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G'day Ron,


I wish I could write poetry like Henry Lawson.

There are two great Australian Poets. Henry Lawson and Andrew Barton (Banjo) Paterson. Paterson got the (Banjo) name from a thougherbred Sire that stood on the family property near Yass in NSW. However, Lawson and Paterson were like chalk and cheese. Lawson grew up on the goldfields of NSW, and became apprenticed to his father as house painter while Paterson as a youth boarded out at Fort Street High School in Sydney and thence onto Sydney University and to a successful life as a solicitor. They were both awarded State funerals, though in the later stages in life Lawson could be found begging on the streets of Sydney to suppliment his alcoholism.

What I like about Lawson is his understandig of the working man (he was a socialist).

So with much ado, mate I shal post another of Lawsons poems.


John


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Arnfinn

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more details, click here!

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Arnfinn
post Feb 12 07, 06:40
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Henry Lawson


The Old Bark School


It was built of bark and poles, and the roof was full of holes
And each leak in rainy weather made a pool;
And the walls were mostly cracks lined with calico and sacks--
There was little need for windows in the school.

Then we rode to school and back by the rugged gully track,
On the old grey horse that carried three or four;
And he looked so very wise that he lit the Masters eyes
Every time he put his head inside the door.

(He had run with Cobb and Co--'That grey leader, let him go!'
There were men 'as knowed the brand upon his hide',
Some 'as knowed him on the course--Funeral service: 'Good old horse!'
When we burnt him in the gully where he died.)

Kevin was the master's name, 'twas from Ireland that he came,
Where the tanks are always full, and feed is grand;
And the joker then in vogue said his lessons wid a brogue--
Twas unconscious immitation understand.

And we learnt the world in scraps from ancient dingy maps
Long discarded by the public schools in town;
And as nearly every book dated back to Captain Cook
Our geography was somewhat upside-down.

It was 'in the book' and so--well, at what we'd let it go,
For we never would believe that print could lie;
And we all learnt pretty soon that when the school came out at noon
'The sun is in the south part of the sky'.

And Ireland!-- that was known from coast-line to Athlone,
But little of the land that gave us birth;
Save that Captain Cook was killed (as was very likely grilled)
And 'our blacks are just the lowest race on earth'.

And woodcut, in its place, of the same degraded race,
More like camels than the blackmen that we knew;
Jimmy Bullock with the rest, scratched his head and gave the best;
But he couldn't stick a bobtailed Kangaroo!

Now the old bark school is gone, and the spot it stood upon
Is a cattle-camp where curlews' cries are heard;
There's a brick school on the flat--an old mate teaches that--
It was built when Mr Kevin was 'transfered'.

But the old school comes again with the exchanges 'cross the plain--
With the Out-Back Press my fancy roams at large
When I read of passing stock, of a western mob of flock,
With James Bullock, Grey, or Henry Dale in charge.

When I think how Jimmy went from the old bark school content,
'Eddicated', with his pack horse after him,
Well ... perhaps, if I were back, I would follow in his track,
And let Kevin 'finish' me as he did Jim.


Mate, If I could only write poetry like this. writersblock.gif



I'm glad ya dropped by Ron.



John.


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Arnfinn

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jgdittier
post Sep 18 07, 17:28
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Dear Arnfinn,
Perhaps the most human of man is prone to excel and yet die with indistinction.
It is easier to love a failure than to revere a saint.
Your Aussie poetry is the tops with me. I like their thinking process and the way they celebrate life. I'll probabaly never get there, but will always dream of going.
Cheers, Ron jgd


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jgdittier
post Jul 19 08, 15:32
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Dear John,
Do post a few more!
I'm so happy that there was a time when poetry such as this was recognized. It means for me that I just came at the wrong time, not that my taste is lacking.Do post a few more!
Cheers, Ron jgd


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