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  ― v ―

The Song of the Dead

Oh, of Ours, hear the song we make for you
Land of yellow wattle bloom, land of smiling Spring
Hearken to the after words, land of pleasant memories,
Shea-oaks of the shady creeks, hear the song we sing.
For we lie quietly, underneath the stony kops,
Where the Veldt is silent, where the guns have ceased to boom.
Here we are waiting, and shall wait to Eternity
Here on the battle-fields, where we have found our doom.

Spare not thy pity—Life is strong and fair for you
City by the waterside, homestead on the plain.
Keep ye remembrance, keep ye a place for us
So all the bitterness of dying be not vain.
Oh, be ye mindful, mindful of our honour's name;
Oh, be ye careful of the word ye speak in jest
For we have bled for you; for we have died for you
Yea, we have given, we have given of our best.

Life that we might have lived, love that we might have loved,
Sorrow of all sorrows, we have drunk thy bitter lees.
Speak thou a word to us, here in our narrow beds
Word of thy mourning in lands beyond the Seas.
Lo, we have paid the price, paid the cost of Victory.
Do not forget, when the rest shall homeward come
Mother of our childhood, sister of our manhood's days,
Loved of our heavy hearts, whom we have left alone.

Hark to the guns—pause, and turn, and think of us
Red was our life's blood, and heavy was the cost.
But ye have Nationhood, but ye are a people strong
Oh, have ye love for the brothers ye have lost?
Oh,—by the blue skies, clear beyond the mountain tops,
Oh, by the dear, dun plains where we were bred,—
What be your tokens, tokens that ye grieve for us,
Tokens of your Sorrowing for me that be Dead?

  ― vii ―


  W. R. H.



  JUNE 12, 1900

This book is affectionately dedicated

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