The Kookaburra by Louis Esson

When Time first opened her dim eyelids
Before the Age of Joy,
Before the Sphinx or the Pyramids,
Before the Siege of Troy,

And before the Alcheringa sighed,
In Australia desolate
The kookaburra, agog, descried
The tangled threads of Fate.

Scornful he glowered at the strange first dawn,
At the strange first stars he scoffed;
And he laughed, when the Veil of Life was drawn
On his bough i’ th’ blue aloft.

At Man and Evil and Destiny
Loud pealed his mocking laughter,
Because high perched on his gaunt gum-tree
He peered before and after.

Tho’ world on wonder world is shuffled
Thro’ fingers of Fate forever,
Unmoved he squats, this wise unruffled
Droll bird of the Never Never.

And moons and moons slip between each rime,
But perched on the same gum-tree,
He is waiting to laugh at the death of Time,
To mock Eternity.


Date: 1910

By: Louis Esson (1878-1943)

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