[Editor: This poem by T.C.C. was published in The Ballarat Star (Ballarat, Vic.), 1 January 1901.]
A New Century’s Greeting.
Hail, new-born Nation of the Southern Sea,
Rich be the guerdon in the coming years,
And through the shock of time may’st thou be free,
Thy destiny uncheck’d by craven fears.
Our sires bequeath’d us Freedom, “priceless boon,”
Their patient skill and hard, unceasing toil,
By rocky mountain range and lone lagoon,
Op’d up the riches of our Austral soil.
Those pioneers six colonies did found
From settlements then wild and desolate,
By ocean girt, two thousand leagues around,
United now each rival kindred State!
A land of gold and herds and plenitude,
O, Commonwealth beneath the Southern Cross;
Here may no taint of old world jealous feud,
The hearts of thy free people e’er engross.
Then, as the varied seasons roll along,
And when the new-born century runs its span,
And ages pass, to make thee great and strong,
May firm hands build for thee and great minds plan!
Salute the Federal Flag, this day unfurl’d,
Australia’s children shall not homage fail!
Proclaim the new-born nation to the world,
The Southern Ocean’s Queen, Australia Hail!
The Ballarat Star (Ballarat, Vic.), 1 January 1901, p. 6
Austral = of or relating to Australia or Australasia; Australian, Australasian; an abbreviation of Australia, Australian, Australasia, Australasian; in a wider context, of or relating to the southern hemisphere; southern, especially a southern wind
bequeath’d = (vernacular) an archaic contraction of “bequeathed”
e’er = (vernacular) an archaic contraction of “ever”
guerdon = reward or recompense; or to give a reward or recompense to someone
may’st = (archaic) may (also spelt “mayest”, “mayst”)
op’d = (vernacular) an archaic contraction of “opened”
thee = (archaic) you
thou = (archaic) you
thy = (archaic) your
uncheck’d = (vernacular) an archaic contraction of “unchecked”
unfurl’d = (vernacular) an archaic contraction of “unfurled”