Posts tagged ‘1891’

Tuesday, 28 August 2018

Homesickness by Mary Frances Barber Butts

We oft are sorrowful yet have no word
To tell why gloom has settled on the day
Like clouds that blot the azure field with gray;
We know not why the singing of a bird
Touches the soul to pain as if we heard
Within the voice another music say
Things not translated in our human way;
We pierce ourselves with blame yet have not erred.
Exiles we are, and when the outreaching heart
Is quickened to sense its native atmosphere,—
When through the fair world’s form the spirit part
Reveals itself an instant passing dear,—
When in a flower’s sweet face new meanings dart
We mourn, shut out, for that which is so near.


Date: 1891

By: Mary Frances Barber Butts (1836-1902)

Saturday, 3 September 2016

September by Susan Frances Riley Harrison (Seranus)

Birds that were gray in the green are black in the yellow.
Here where the green remains rocks one little fellow.

Quaker in gray, do you know that the green is going?
More than that— do you know that the yellow is showing?

Singer of songs, do you know that your Youth is flying?
That Age will soon at the lock of your life be prying?

Lover of life, do you know that the brown is going?
More than that— do you know that the gray is showing?

From: Harrison, S. Frances (Seranus), Pine, Rose and Fleur de Lis, 1891, Hart & Company: Toronto, p. 168.

Date: 1891

By: Susan Frances Riley Harrison (Seranus) (1859-1935)

Monday, 25 July 2016

Broken Branches by Jessie Mackay

As on the dark and northern pine
Down drop the feathery flakes of snow,
While the branches hold but feel them not,
Till the pile doth heavy and heavier grow;
And then—ah then the branches break!—
So do the hours, the days, the years
Fall with a soft and fairy touch
Till, mourned with unavailing tears,
The fairest branches are swept away
From the tree of life— the desolate tree!
Never to spread and blossom again
Till a spring the world shall never see.

From: Mackay, Jessie, The Sitter on the Rail: And Other Poems, 1891, Simpson and Williams: Christchurch, p. 73.

Date: 1891

By: Jessie Mackay (1864-1938)

Monday, 1 February 2016

The Snow Queen by Caroline (Dollie) Maitland Radford

The snow queen passed our way last night,
Between the darkness and the light,
And flowers from an enchanted star,
Fell showerlike from her flying car.

And silently through all the hours,
The trees have borne their magic flowers,
And now stand up with dauntless head,
To catch the morning’s gold and red.

From: Radford, Dollie, A Light Load, 1891, Elkin Mathews: London, p. 27.

Date: 1891

By: Caroline (Dollie) Maitland Radford (1858-1920)

Monday, 9 February 2015

Venus Victrix by William Bledsoe Philpot

So there, my perilous warriouresse, you pose
At once Love’s champion and his deadest prize;
Oh! in what proud array your beauty goes!
See what rare levin flashes from your eyes!
Your words far worse than all artilleries,
As though you ranked me with your deadliest foes;
Your beauty vaunting what your grace denies,
Why draw me, dare me, to a fatal close?
Or else why wear that ventayle on your brow.
Your wimpled locks a plumèd burganet,
A tower impregnable your neck of snow.
On either cheek a blood-red banneret.
Your breasts — brave outworks which you dare me scale —
Well! Love be dayesman — if I fail, I fail.

From: Philpot, William and Philpot, Hamlet (ed.), A Scrip of Salvage from the Poems of William Philpot, M.A., Oxon., 1891, Macmillan and Co.: London, p. 6.

Date: 1891 (published)

By: William Bledsoe Philpot (1823-1889)

Saturday, 9 August 2014

My Laddie’s Hounds by Marguerite Elizabeth Miller Easter

They are my laddie’s hounds
That rin the wood at brak o’ day.
Wha is it taks them hence? Can ony say
Wha is it taks my laddie’s hounds
At brak o’ day?

They cleek aff thegither,
An’ then fa’ back, wi’ room atween
For ane to walk; sae aften, I hae seen
The baith cleek aff thegither
Wi’ ane atween!

And when toward the pines
Up yonder lane they loup alang,
I see ae bonnie laddie brent and strang,
I see ae laddie loup alang
Toward the pines.

I follow them, in mind,
Ilk time; right weel I ken the way, —
They thrid the wood, an’ speel the staney brae,
An’ skir the field; I follow them,
I ken the way.

They daddle at the creek,
Whaur down fra aff the reaching-logs
I stoup, wi’ my dear laddie, an’ the dogs,
An’ drink o’ springs that spait the creek
Maist to the logs.

He’s but a bairn, atho’
He hunts the mountain’s lonely bree,
His doggies’ ears abune their brows wi’ glee
He ties; he’s but a bairn, atho’
He hunts the bree.

Fu’ length they a’ stretch out
Upon ae bink that green trees hap
In shade. He whusslits saft; the beagles nap
Wi’ een half shut, a’ stretchin’ out
Whaur green trees hap.

And noo he fades awa’
Frae ‘tween the twa — into the blue.
My sight gats blind; gude Lord, it isna true
That he has gane for aye, awa’ —
Into the blue!

They are my laddie’s hounds
That mak the hill at fa’ o’ day
Wi’ dowie heads hung laigh; can ony say
Wha is it hunts my laddie’s hounds
Till fa’ o’ day?


Date: 1891

By: Marguerite Elizabeth Miller Easter (1839-1894)

Saturday, 26 July 2014

A Ballad of the Were-Wolf by Rosamond Ball Marriott Watson (Graham. R. Tomson)

The gudewife sits i’ the chimney-neuk,
An’ looks on the louping flame;
The rain fa’s chill, and the win’ ca’s shrill,
Ere the auld gudeman comes hame.

“Oh, why is your cheek sae wan, gudewife?
An’ why do ye glower on me?
Sae dour ye luik i’ the chimney-neuk,
Wi’ the red licht in your e’e!

“Yet this nicht should ye welcome me,
This ae nicht mair than a’,
For I hae scotched yon great grey wolf
That took our bairnies twa.

“‘Twas a sair, sair strife for my very life,
As I warstled there my lane;
But I’ll hae her heart or e’er we part,
Gin ever we meet again.

“An’ ’twas ae sharp stroke o’ my bonny knife
That gar’d her baud awa’;
Fu’ fast she went out-owre the bent
Wi’outen her right fore-paw.

“Gae tak’ the foot o’ the drumlie brute,
And hang it upo’ the wa’;
An’ the next time that we meet, gudewife,
The tane of us shall fa’.”

He’s flung his pouch on the gudewife’s lap,
I’ the firelicht shinin’ fair,
Yet naught they saw o’ the grey wolf’s paw.
For a bluidy hand lay there.

O hooly, hooly rose she up,
Wi’ the red licht in her e’e,
Till she stude but a span frae the auld gudeman
Whiles never a word spak’ she.

But she stripped the claiths frae her lang richt arm,
That were wrappit roun’ and roun’,
The first was white, an’ the last was red;
And the fresh bluid dreeped adown.

She stretchit him out her lang right arm,
An’ cauld as the deid stude he.
The flames louped bricht i’ the gloamin’ licht —
There was nae hand there to see!

From: Marriott Watson, Rosamund, The Poems of Rosamund Marriott Watson, 1912, John Lane The Bodley Head: London, pp. 148-149.

Date: 1891

By: Rosamund Ball Marriott Watson (Graham R. Tomson) (1860-1911)

Friday, 27 December 2013

A Night Thought by Harry Harbord (Breaker) Morant

The world around is sleeping,
The stars are bright o’erhead,
The shades of myalls weeping
Upon the sward are spread;
Among the gloomy pinetops
The fitful breezes blow,
And their murmurs seem the music
Of a song of long ago;
Soft, passionate, and wailing
Is the tender old refrain –
With a yearning unavailing –
“Will he no come back again?”

The camp-fire sparks are flying
Up from the pine-log’s glow,
The wandering wind is sighing
That ballad sweet and low;
The drooping branches gleaming
In the firelight, sway and stir;
And the bushman’s brain is dreaming
Of the song she sang, and her.
And the murmurs of the forest
Ring home to heart and brain,
As in the pine is chorused
“Will he no come back again?”

On a Warrego sandridge, 8 August 1891.


Date: 1891

By: Harry Harbord (Breaker) Morant (?1864-1902)

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Compensation by Lizette Woodworth Reese

All day I bar you from my slightest thought;
Make myself clear of you or any mark
Of our wrecked dawn and the uprising lark;
Am stern and strong, and do the thing I ought.
Yet ever are there moments with you fraught:
I hear you like some glad sound in the dark;
You wait like bloom outside my branches stark;
I dare not heed; else were my fight unfought
But when the clamor and the heat are done,
And spent with both I come unto that door,
Sleep opens for me every setting sun,
The bitter lies behind, the sweet before.
We that are twain by day, at night are one.
A dream can bring me to your arms once more.

From: Reese, Lizette Woodworth, A Handful of Lavender, 1891, Houghton, Mifflin and Company, Boston and New York, p.100.

Date: 1891

By: Lizette Woodworth Reese (1856-1935)

Friday, 26 April 2013

Where the Dead Men Lie by Barcroft Henry Thomas Boake

Out on the wastes of the Never Never—
That’s where the dead men lie!
There where the heat-waves dance for ever—
That’s where the dead men lie!
That’s where the Earth’s loved sons are keeping
Endless tryst: not the west wind sweeping
Feverish pinions can wake their sleeping—
Out where the dead men lie!

Where brown Summer and Death have mated—
That’s where the dead men lie!
Loving with fiery lust unsated—
That’s where the dead men lie!
Out where the grinning skulls bleach whitely
Under the saltbush sparkling brightly;
Out where the wild dogs chorus nightly—
That’s where the dead men lie!

Deep in the yellow, flowing river—
That’s where the dead men lie!
Under the banks where the shadows quiver—
That’s where the dead men lie!

Where the platypus twists and doubles,
Leaving a train of tiny bubbles;
Rid at last of their earthly troubles—
That’s where the dead men lie!

East and backward pale faces turning—
That’s how the dead men lie!
Gaunt arms stretched with a voiceless yearning—
That’s how the dead men lie!
Oft in the fragrant hush of nooning
Hearing again their mothers’ crooning,
Wrapt for aye in a dreamful swooning—
That’s how the dead men lie!

Only the hand of Night can free them—
That’s when the dead men fly!
Only the frightened cattle see them—
See the dead men go by!
Cloven hoofs beating out one measure,
Bidding the stockman know no leisure—
That’s when the dead men take their pleasure!
That’s when the dead men fly!

Ask, too, the never-sleeping drover:
He sees the dead pass by;
Hearing them call to their friends—the plover,
Hearing the dead men cry;
Seeing their faces stealing, stealing,
Hearing their laughter pealing, pealing,
Watching their grey forms wheeling, wheeling
Round where the cattle lie!

Strangled by thirst and fierce privation—
That’s how the dead men die!
Out on Moneygrub’s farthest station—
That’s how the dead men die!
Hardfaced greybeards, youngsters callow;
Some mounds cared for, some left fallow;
Some deep down, yet others shallow;
Some having but the sky.

Moneygrub, as he sips his claret,
Looks with complacent eye
Down at his watch-chain, eighteen-carat—
There, in his club, hard by:
Recks not that every link is stamped with
Names of the men whose limbs are cramped with
Too long lying in grave mould, camped with
Death where the dead men lie.

From: Boake, Barcroft, Where the Dead Men Lie, 1897, Angus and Robertson: Sydney, pp. 140-142.

Date: 1891

By: Barcroft Henry Thomas Boake (1866-1892)