The Song and the Bird [poem by John Shaw Neilson]

[Editor: This poem by John Shaw Neilson was published in Heart of Spring (1919) and Collected Poems of John Shaw Neilson (1934).]

The Song and the Bird

He hath his Heaven got:
For Love he shakes the tree:
Happy he heedeth not
The many gods that be.

He telleth all his mad
Manoeuvring to the morn:
The shy slow-footed lad
Hears him, and is forlorn.

And doth he grieve or think
In dreaming drab and dim?
Can aught of dull earth sink
Into the heart of him?

He fears not wind or sky:
He counts not moon or year,
Or the many men who die,
Or the green wheat in the ear.

He knoweth the false and fair
And the deeps of deep things:
— How shall I know this bird
Who sings and sings and sings?

Shaw Neilson, Heart of Spring, The Bookfellow, Sydney, 1919, page 88

Also published in:
John Shaw Neilson (editor: R. H. Croll), Collected Poems of John Shaw Neilson, Lothian Publishing Company, Melbourne, 1934 [May 1949 reprint], page 78

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