I’ll Climb the High Range [poem by Philip Durham Lorimer]

[Editor: This poem by Philip Durham Lorimer was published in Songs and Verses by Philip Durham Lorimer: An Australian Bush Poet, 1901.]

I’ll Climb the High Range

I’ll climb the high range in my glee,
When the mists are asleep in its arms,
When the bird from its shelter awakes,
And unseen is the sun with its charms.

When the leaves are unwoo’d by the winds,
And the ’possum is curled in its home,
I’ll wake my wild heart from its silence
And gladly with Nature will roam.

The moments seemed long, and the night
Never brought to my soul any rest ;
I longed to be musing with Nature,
She soothes me to peace on her breast.

Where boulders on boulders are seen,
Where the lizards creep under the stone,
My feet on the grass will be free,
In rapture to worldlings unknown.

I’ll ramble where man has not trod,
Where the track of a snake underlies
Giant iron-bark trees with their boughs
That are tinged with a blue like the skies.

I’ll watch ev’ry crevice and crack,
Ev’ry motion on leaf and on tree ;
For the life that’s abroad in the morn
Is the life that’s a pleasure to me.

The laugh of a child when it wakes
Is the song that is sweetest to hear ;
That voice wakes the mother from slumber
With joy that her child is so near.

The mind that is willing to read
The changes that Nature delight,
Reaps harvests of joy in its wonder
At the truths that are found over-night.

In the wing or the note of the bird,
In the rock, or the chasm, or nook, —
There is life in each thing that we see,
And lessons, if rightly we look !

Where wrens twitter soft on a vine
Which is matted with ferns ev’rywhere ;
O’er the pool that is flowing and filling,
There’s a beautiful song in the air.

I’ll climb the high range in the days
When my will is inclined thus to roam ;
Then the portals of Heaven are opened,
And I see faces sweet in their home.

I would bring ev’ry heart to the tune
That Nature has taught me so true,
In a world that is full of the heavens
Alas ! only seen by a few !


E. A. Petherick (editor). Songs and Verses by Philip Durham Lorimer: An Australian Bush Poet, William Clowes and Sons, London, 1901, pages 220-222

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