Vonda Stanley's collection of early Australian bush poems



The Filling of the Swamps

Hurrah for the storm-clouds sweeping!

Hurrah for the driving rain!

The dull earth out of her sleeping

Is wakened to life again.

There are mirrors of crystal shining

Whenever the cloud-wrack breaks,

And grass-clad banks are twining

A wreath for the fairy lakes - - -

Lakes that are links in an endless chain

For the water is out in the swamps again!


Hurrah for the red-gums standing

So high on the range above!

Hurrah for the she-oaks bending

So low to the wave they love!

Hurrah for the reed-stems slender!

Hurrah for the shade they fling,

For the curve of the cygnet&'s splendour,

The sheen of the black duck&'s wing!

Hurrah for the clouds and the glorious rain - - -

The water is out in the swamps again!


Hurrah for the laughing water,

The songs that the streamlets sing!

Whish! The teal duck's mate has sought her

With a stroke of his mottled wing!

Hurrah for the deepening shadows,

The ibises eagle-eyed,

The dash of the purple swallows,

To bury their breasts in the tide!

Woe! It is woe to the Drought-King's reign!

The water is out in the swamps again!  

  Will H. Ogilvie, B. Scotland 21.8.1869 to 1963

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