Vonda Stanley's collection of early Australian bush poems



There goes the Winter, sulkily slinking

Somewhere behind the trees on the hill.

He caught a vision of sweet Spring prinking

In green before her mirror---the rill.

And he turned away

With his face quite grey,

And he went without ever a glance behind him

But I want to know

Which way does he go,

And does anyone ever try to find him?

Is he caught to the sky in a burst of thunder

And tucked away in the clouds to sleep?

Or does he go down to the sea, I wonder,

And fling himself out where the waves roll deep?

Is he washed ashore

After tossings sore,

And found by some fisherman, pale and dying?

On some lonely beach

Beyond human reach

Still and stark is poor Winter lying?

Or climbs he up, with his grey head drooping,

Yon purple mountain that hides the sun,

And stooping and rising, rising and stooping,

Digs a grave where never was one?

And then lies down

In his grey, pale gown

A prayer on his lips, and his hands together?

"What tears will they shed

Because I am dead?

They will dance on my grave all the bright Spring weather."

Oh! Winter, Winter, my tears are falling,

Are you glad of the tears of a little child?

Though Spring is abroad and calling, calling,

I cling to the edge of your cloak so wild.

And I kiss your hand

And I understand,

And I smooth your proor grey head, low-lying,

Ah! I cannot sing

Just yet with the Spring

While Winter, Winter, is pale and dying.


Ethel Turner 

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