Song for the Departure of the Troops, 1901 [poem by Agnes L. Storrie]

[Editor: This poem by Agnes L. Storrie was published in Poems, 1909.]

Song for the Departure of the Troops,

1901.

March, march, march, to the call of bugle and fife,
Kiss, kiss, kiss, your sweetheart or your wife,
Look, look, look at your friends as you pass them by.
And lift your face
To the matchless grace
Of your own Australian sky.
For your hands are at the plough, my lads,
And its quickstep forward now, my lads,
Let him who’d wear
The laurel care
That it shall fit his brow, my lads.

Tramp, tramp, tramp, our hearts keep time to your feet,
Quick, quick, quick, through the dear old narrow street,
Long, long, long we shall wait with ears astrain
For the music bred
Of this measured tread,
Ah! shall we wait in vain?
For our pride is all aflame, my lads,
We trust you with our name, my lads,
And if our cheers
Are mixed with tears
Their meaning’s just the same, my lads.

Go, go, go, we have felt for ill or good,
Sharp, sharp, sharp, the pangs of nationhood.
You, you, you, who spring so gallantly
From hut and hall
At England’s call,
You shall our first fruits be.
And this day shall leave a trace, my lads,
That time shall not efface, my lads,
Bethink you then
To live like men,
Or die as fits your race, my lads.



Source:
Agnes L. Storrie. Poems, J. W. Kettlewell, Sydney, 1909, pages 212-213

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