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Best Famous Over And Over Again Poems

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12
Written by David Berman | Create an image from this poem

Self-Portrait At 28

 I know it's a bad title
but I'm giving it to myself as a gift
on a day nearly canceled by sunlight
when the entire hill is approaching
the ideal of Virginia
brochured with goldenrod and loblolly
and I think "at least I have not woken up
with a bloody knife in my hand"
by then having absently wandered
one hundred yards from the house
while still seated in this chair
with my eyes closed.
It is a certain hill the one I imagine when I hear the word "hill" and if the apocalypse turns out to be a world-wide nervous breakdown if our five billion minds collapse at once well I'd call that a surprise ending and this hill would still be beautiful a place I wouldn't mind dying alone or with you.
I am trying to get at something and I want to talk very plainly to you so that we are both comforted by the honesty.
You see there is a window by my desk I stare out when I am stuck though the outdoors has rarely inspired me to write and I don't know why I keep staring at it.
My childhood hasn't made good material either mostly being a mulch of white minutes with a few stand out moments, popping tar bubbles on the driveway in the summer a certain amount of pride at school everytime they called it "our sun" and playing football when the only play was "go out long" are what stand out now.
If squeezed for more information I can remember old clock radios with flipping metal numbers and an entree called Surf and Turf.
As a way of getting in touch with my origins every night I set the alarm clock for the time I was born so that waking up becomes a historical reenactment and the first thing I do is take a reading of the day and try to flow with it like when you're riding a mechanical bull and you strain to learn the pattern quickly so you don't inadverantly resist it.
II two I can't remember being born and no one else can remember it either even the doctor who I met years later at a cocktail party.
It's one of the little disappointments that makes you think about getting away going to Holly Springs or Coral Gables and taking a room on the square with a landlady whose hands are scored by disinfectant, telling the people you meet that you are from Alaska, and listen to what they have to say about Alaska until you have learned much more about Alaska than you ever will about Holly Springs or Coral Gables.
Sometimes I am buying a newspaper in a strange city and think "I am about to learn what it's like to live here.
" Oftentimes there is a news item about the complaints of homeowners who live beside the airport and I realize that I read an article on this subject nearly once a year and always receive the same image.
I am in bed late at night in my house near the airport listening to the jets fly overhead a strange wife sleeping beside me.
In my mind, the bedroom is an amalgamation of various cold medicine commercial sets (there is always a box of tissue on the nightstand).
I know these recurring news articles are clues, flaws in the design though I haven't figured out how to string them together yet, but I've begun to notice that the same people are dying over and over again, for instance Minnie Pearl who died this year for the fourth time in four years.
III three Today is the first day of Lent and once again I'm not really sure what it is.
How many more years will I let pass before I take the trouble to ask someone? It reminds of this morning when you were getting ready for work.
I was sitting by the space heater numbly watching you dress and when you asked why I never wear a robe I had so many good reasons I didn't know where to begin.
If you were cool in high school you didn't ask too many questions.
You could tell who'd been to last night's big metal concert by the new t-shirts in the hallway.
You didn't have to ask and that's what cool was: the ability to deduct to know without asking.
And the pressure to simulate coolness means not asking when you don't know, which is why kids grow ever more stupid.
A yearbook's endpages, filled with promises to stay in touch, stand as proof of the uselessness of a teenager's promise.
Not like I'm dying for a letter from the class stoner ten years on but.
.
.
Do you remember the way the girls would call out "love you!" conveniently leaving out the "I" as if they didn't want to commit to their own declarations.
I agree that the "I" is a pretty heavy concept and hope you won't get uncomfortable if I should go into some deeper stuff here.
IV four There are things I've given up on like recording funny answering machine messages.
It's part of growing older and the human race as a group has matured along the same lines.
It seems our comedy dates the quickest.
If you laugh out loud at Shakespeare's jokes I hope you won't be insulted if I say you're trying too hard.
Even sketches from the original Saturday Night Live seem slow-witted and obvious now.
It's just that our advances are irrepressible.
Nowadays little kids can't even set up lemonade stands.
It makes people too self-conscious about the past, though try explaining that to a kid.
I'm not saying it should be this way.
All this new technology will eventually give us new feelings that will never completely displace the old ones leaving everyone feeling quite nervous and split in two.
We will travel to Mars even as folks on Earth are still ripping open potato chip bags with their teeth.
Why? I don't have the time or intelligence to make all the connections like my friend Gordon (this is a true story) who grew up in Braintree Massachusetts and had never pictured a brain snagged in a tree until I brought it up.
He'd never broken the name down to its parts.
By then it was too late.
He had moved to Coral Gables.
V five The hill out my window is still looking beautiful suffused in a kind of gold national park light and it seems to say, I'm sorry the world could not possibly use another poem about Orpheus but I'm available if you're not working on a self-portrait or anything.
I'm watching my dog have nightmares, twitching and whining on the office floor and I try to imagine what beast has cornered him in the meadow where his dreams are set.
I'm just letting the day be what it is: a place for a large number of things to gather and interact -- not even a place but an occasion a reality for real things.
Friends warned me not to get too psychedelic or religious with this piece: "They won't accept it if it's too psychedelic or religious," but these are valid topics and I'm the one with the dog twitching on the floor possibly dreaming of me that part of me that would beat a dog for no good reason no reason that a dog could see.
I am trying to get at something so simple that I have to talk plainly so the words don't disfigure it and if it turns out that what I say is untrue then at least let it be harmless like a leaky boat in the reeds that is bothering no one.
VI six I can't trust the accuracy of my own memories, many of them having blended with sentimental telephone and margarine commercials plainly ruined by Madison Avenue though no one seems to call the advertising world "Madison Avenue" anymore.
Have they moved? Let's get an update on this.
But first I have some business to take care of.
I walked out to the hill behind our house which looks positively Alaskan today and it would be easier to explain this if I had a picture to show you but I was with our young dog and he was running through the tall grass like running through the tall grass is all of life together until a bird calls or he finds a beer can and that thing fills all the space in his head.
You see, his mind can only hold one thought at a time and when he finally hears me call his name he looks up and cocks his head and for a single moment my voice is everything: Self-portrait at 28.


Written by Carl Sandburg | Create an image from this poem

The Four Brothers

 MAKE war songs out of these;
Make chants that repeat and weave.
Make rhythms up to the ragtime chatter of the machine guns; Make slow-booming psalms up to the boom of the big guns.
Make a marching song of swinging arms and swinging legs, Going along, Going along, On the roads from San Antonio to Athens, from Seattle to Bagdad— The boys and men in winding lines of khaki, the circling squares of bayonet points.
Cowpunchers, cornhuskers, shopmen, ready in khaki; Ballplayers, lumberjacks, ironworkers, ready in khaki; A million, ten million, singing, “I am ready.
” This the sun looks on between two seaboards, In the land of Lincoln, in the land of Grant and Lee.
I heard one say, “I am ready to be killed.
” I heard another say, “I am ready to be killed.
” O sunburned clear-eyed boys! I stand on sidewalks and you go by with drums and guns and bugles, You—and the flag! And my heart tightens, a fist of something feels my throat When you go by, You on the kaiser hunt, you and your faces saying, “I am ready to be killed.
” They are hunting death, Death for the one-armed mastoid kaiser.
They are after a Hohenzollern head: There is no man-hunt of men remembered like this.
The four big brothers are out to kill.
France, Russia, Britain, America— The four republics are sworn brothers to kill the kaiser.
Yes, this is the great man-hunt; And the sun has never seen till now Such a line of toothed and tusked man-killers, In the blue of the upper sky, In the green of the undersea, In the red of winter dawns.
Eating to kill, Sleeping to kill, Asked by their mothers to kill, Wished by four-fifths of the world to kill— To cut the kaiser’s throat, To hack the kaiser’s head, To hang the kaiser on a high-horizon gibbet.
And is it nothing else than this? Three times ten million men thirsting the blood Of a half-cracked one-armed child of the German kings? Three times ten million men asking the blood Of a child born with his head wrong-shaped, The blood of rotted kings in his veins? If this were all, O God, I would go to the far timbers And look on the gray wolves Tearing the throats of moose: I would ask a wilder drunk of blood.
Look! It is four brothers in joined hands together.
The people of bleeding France, The people of bleeding Russia, The people of Britain, the people of America— These are the four brothers, these are the four republics.
At first I said it in anger as one who clenches his fist in wrath to fling his knuckles into the face of some one taunting; Now I say it calmly as one who has thought it over and over again at night, among the mountains, by the seacombers in storm.
I say now, by God, only fighters to-day will save the world, nothing but fighters will keep alive the names of those who left red prints of bleeding feet at Valley Forge in Christmas snow.
On the cross of Jesus, the sword of Napoleon, the skull of Shakespeare, the pen of Tom Jefferson, the ashes of Abraham Lincoln, or any sign of the red and running life poured out by the mothers of the world, By the God of morning glories climbing blue the doors of quiet homes, by the God of tall hollyhocks laughing glad to children in peaceful valleys, by the God of new mothers wishing peace to sit at windows nursing babies, I swear only reckless men, ready to throw away their lives by hunger, deprivation, desperate clinging to a single purpose imperturbable and undaunted, men with the primitive guts of rebellion, Only fighters gaunt with the red brand of labor’s sorrow on their brows and labor’s terrible pride in their blood, men with souls asking danger—only these will save and keep the four big brothers.
Good-night is the word, good-night to the kings, to the czars, Good-night to the kaiser.
The breakdown and the fade-away begins.
The shadow of a great broom, ready to sweep out the trash, is here.
One finger is raised that counts the czar, The ghost who beckoned men who come no more— The czar gone to the winds on God’s great dustpan, The czar a pinch of nothing, The last of the gibbering Romanoffs.
Out and good-night— The ghosts of the summer palaces And the ghosts of the winter palaces! Out and out, good-night to the kings, the czars, the kaisers.
Another finger will speak, And the kaiser, the ghost who gestures a hundred million sleeping-waking ghosts, The kaiser will go onto God’s great dustpan— The last of the gibbering Hohenzollerns.
Look! God pities this trash, God waits with a broom and a dustpan, God knows a finger will speak and count them out.
It is written in the stars; It is spoken on the walls; It clicks in the fire-white zigzag of the Atlantic wireless; It mutters in the bastions of thousand-mile continents; It sings in a whistle on the midnight winds from Walla Walla to Mesopotamia: Out and good-night.
The millions slow in khaki, The millions learning Turkey in the Straw and John Brown’s Body, The millions remembering windrows of dead at Gettysburg, Chickamauga, and Spottsylvania Court House, The millions dreaming of the morning star of Appomattox, The millions easy and calm with guns and steel, planes and prows: There is a hammering, drumming hell to come.
The killing gangs are on the way.
God takes one year for a job.
God takes ten years or a million.
God knows when a doom is written.
God knows this job will be done and the words spoken: Out and good-night.
The red tubes will run, And the great price be paid, And the homes empty, And the wives wishing, And the mothers wishing.
There is only one way now, only the way of the red tubes and the great price.
Well… Maybe the morning sun is a five-cent yellow balloon, And the evening stars the joke of a God gone crazy.
Maybe the mothers of the world, And the life that pours from their torsal folds— Maybe it’s all a lie sworn by liars, And a God with a cackling laughter says: “I, the Almighty God, I have made all this, I have made it for kaisers, czars, and kings.
” Three times ten million men say: No.
Three times ten million men say: God is a God of the People.
And the God who made the world And fixed the morning sun, And flung the evening stars, And shaped the baby hands of life, This is the God of the Four Brothers; This is the God of bleeding France and bleeding Russia; This is the God of the people of Britain and America.
The graves from the Irish Sea to the Caucasus peaks are ten times a million.
The stubs and stumps of arms and legs, the eyesockets empty, the cripples, ten times a million.
The crimson thumb-print of this anathema is on the door panels of a hundred million homes.
Cows gone, mothers on sick-beds, children cry a hunger and no milk comes in the noon-time or at night.
The death-yells of it all, the torn throats of men in ditches calling for water, the shadows and the hacking lungs in dugouts, the steel paws that clutch and squeeze a scarlet drain day by day—the storm of it is hell.
But look! child! the storm is blowing for a clean air.
Look! the four brothers march And hurl their big shoulders And swear the job shall be done.
Out of the wild finger-writing north and south, east and west, over the blood-crossed, blood-dusty ball of earth, Out of it all a God who knows is sweeping clean, Out of it all a God who sees and pierces through, is breaking and cleaning out an old thousand years, is making ready for a new thousand years.
The four brothers shall be five and more.
Under the chimneys of the winter time the children of the world shall sing new songs.
Among the rocking restless cradles the mothers of the world shall sing new sleepy-time songs.
Written by Robert Frost | Create an image from this poem

Birches

 When I see birches bend to left and right
Across the lines of straighter darker trees,
I like to think some boy's been swinging them.
But swinging doesn't bend them down to stay.
Ice-storms do that.
Often you must have seen them Loaded with ice a sunny winter morning After a rain.
They click upon themselves As the breeze rises, and turn many-coloured As the stir cracks and crazes their enamel.
Soon the sun's warmth makes them shed crystal shells Shattering and avalanching on the snow-crust Such heaps of broken glass to sweep away You'd think the inner dome of heaven had fallen.
They are dragged to the withered bracken by the load, And they seem not to break; though once they are bowed So low for long, they never right themselves: You may see their trunks arching in the woods Years afterwards, trailing their leaves on the ground, Like girls on hands and knees that throw their hair Before them over their heads to dry in the sun.
But I was going to say when Truth broke in With all her matter-of-fact about the ice-storm, I should prefer to have some boy bend them As he went out and in to fetch the cows-- Some boy too far from town to learn baseball, Whose only play was what he found himself, Summer or winter, and could play alone.
One by one he subdued his father's trees By riding them down over and over again Until he took the stiffness out of them, And not one but hung limp, not one was left For him to conquer.
He learned all there was To learn about not launching out too soon And so not carrying the tree away Clear to the ground.
He always kept his poise To the top branches, climbing carefully With the same pains you use to fill a cup Up to the brim, and even above the brim.
Then he flung outward, feet first, with a swish, Kicking his way down through the air to the ground.
So was I once myself a swinger of birches.
And so I dream of going back to be.
It's when I'm weary of considerations, And life is too much like a pathless wood Where your face burns and tickles with the cobwebs Broken across it, and one eye is weeping From a twig's having lashed across it open.
I'd like to get away from earth awhile And then come back to it and begin over.
May no fate wilfully misunderstand me And half grant what I wish and snatch me away Not to return.
Earth's the right place for love: I don't know where it's likely to go better.
I'd like to go by climbing a birch tree~ And climb black branches up a snow-white trunk Toward heaven, till the tree could bear no more, But dipped its top and set me down again.
That would be good both going and coming back.
One could do worse than be a swinger of birches.
Written by Robert Pinsky | Create an image from this poem

Poem With Refrains

 The opening scene.
The yellow, coal-fed fog Uncurling over the tainted city river, A young girl rowing and her anxious father Scavenging for corpses.
Funeral meats.
The clever Abandoned orphan.
The great athletic killer Sulking in his tent.
As though all stories began With someone dying.
When her mother died, My mother refused to attend the funeral-- In fact, she sulked in her tent all through the year Of the old lady's dying.
I don't know why: She said, because she loved her mother so much She couldn't bear to see the way the doctors, Or her father, or--someone--was letting her mother die.
"Follow your saint, follow with accents sweet; Haste you, sad notes, fall at her flying feet.
" She fogs things up, she scavenges the taint.
Possibly that's the reason I write these poems.
But they did speak: on the phone.
Wept and argued, So fiercely one or the other often cut off A sentence by hanging up in rage--like lovers, But all that year she never saw her face.
They lived on the same block, four doors apart.
"Absence my presence is; strangeness my grace; With them that walk against me is my sun.
" "Synagogue" is a word I never heard, We called it shul, the Yiddish word for school.
Elms, terra-cotta, the ocean a few blocks east.
"Lay institution": she taught me we didn't think God lived in it.
The rabbi is just a teacher.
But what about the hereditary priests, Descendants of the Cohanes of the Temple, Like Walter Holtz--I called him Uncle Walter, When I was small.
A big man with a face Just like a boxer dog or a cartoon sergeant.
She told me whenever he helped a pretty woman Try on a shoe in his store, he'd touch her calf And ask her, "How does that feel?" I was too little To get the point but pretended to understand.
"Desire, be steady; hope is your delight, An orb wherein no creature can ever be sorry.
" She didn't go to my bar mitzvah, either.
I can't say why: she was there, and then she wasn't.
I looked around before I mounted the steps To chant that babble and the speech the rabbi wrote And there she wasn't, and there was Uncle Walter The Cohane frowning with his doggy face: "She's missing her own son's musaf.
" Maybe she just Doesn't like rituals.
Afterwards, she had a reason I don't remember.
I wasn't upset: the truth Is, I had decided to be the clever orphan Some time before.
By now, it's all a myth.
What is a myth but something that seems to happen Always for the first time over and over again? And ten years later, she missed my brother's, too.
I'm sorry: I think it was something about a hat.
"Hot sun, cool fire, tempered with sweet air, Black shade, fair nurse, shadow my white hair; Shine, sun; burn, fire; breathe, air, and ease me.
" She sees the minister of the Nation of Islam On television, though she's half-blind in one eye.
His bow tie is lime, his jacket crocodile green.
Vigorously he denounces the Jews who traded in slaves, The Jews who run the newspapers and the banks.
"I see what this guy is mad about now," she says, "It must have been some Jew that sold him the suit.
" "And the same wind sang and the same wave whitened, And or ever the garden's last petals were shed, In the lips that had whispered, the eyes that had lightened.
" But when they unveiled her mother's memorial stone, Gathered at the graveside one year after the death, According to custom, while we were standing around About to begin the prayers, her car appeared.
It was a black car; the ground was deep in snow.
My mother got out and walked toward us, across The field of gravestones capped with snow, her coat Black as the car, and they waited to start the prayers Until she arrived.
I think she enjoyed the drama.
I can't remember if she prayed or not, But that may be the way I'll remember her best: Dark figure, awaited, attended, aware, apart.
"The present time upon time passëd striketh; With Phoebus's wandering course the earth is graced.
The air still moves, and by its moving, cleareth; The fire up ascends, and planets feedeth; The water passeth on, and all lets weareth; The earth stands still, yet change of changes breedeth.
"
Written by Henry Lawson | Create an image from this poem

Here Died

 There's many a schoolboy's bat and ball that are gathering dust at home, 
For he hears a voice in the future call, and he trains for the war to come; 
A serious light in his eyes is seen as he comes from the schoolhouse gate; 
He keeps his kit and his rifle clean, and he sees that his back is straight.
But straight or crooked, or round, or lame – you may let these words take root; As the time draws near for the sterner game, all boys should learn to shoot, From the beardless youth to the grim grey-beard, let Australians ne'er forget, A lame limb never interfered with a brave man's shooting yet.
Over and over and over again, to you and our friends and me, The warning of danger has sounded plain – like the thud of a gun at sea.
The rich man turns to his wine once more, and the gay to their worldly joys, The "statesman" laughs at a hint of war – but something has told the boys.
The schoolboy scouts of the White Man's Land are out on the hills to-day; They trace the tracks from the sea-beach sand and sea-cliffs grim and grey; They take the range for a likely shot by every cape and head, And they spy the lay of each lonely spot where an enemy's foot might tread.
In the cooling breeze of the coastal streams, or out where the townships bake, They march in fancy, and fight in dreams, and die for Australia's sake.
They hold the fort till relief arrives, when the landing parties storm, And they take the pride of their fresh young lives in the set of a uniform.
Where never a loaded shell was hurled, nor a rifle fired to kill, The schoolboy scouts of the Southern World are choosing their Battery Hill.
They run the tapes on the flats and fells by roads that the guns might sweep, They are fixing in memory obstacles where the firing lines shall creep.
They read and they study the gunnery - they ask till the meaning's plain, But the craft of the scout is a simple thing to the young Australian brain.
They blaze the track for a forward run, where the scrub is everywhere, And they mark positions for every gun and every unit there.
They trace the track for a quick retreat – and the track for the other way round, And they mark the spot in the summer heat where the water is always found.
They note the chances of cliff and tide, and where they can move, and when, And every point where a man might hide in the days when they'll fight as men.
When silent men with their rifles lie by many a ferny dell; And turn their heads when a scout goes by, with a cheery growl "All's well"; And scouts shall climb by the fisherman's ways, and watch for a sign of ships, With stern eyes fixed on the threatening haze where the blue horizon dips.
When men shall camp in the dark and damp by the bough-marked battery, Between the forts and the open ports where the miners watch the sea; And talk perhaps of their boy-scout days, as they sit in their shelters rude, While motors race to the distant bays with ammunition and food.
When the city alight shall wait by night for news from a far-out post, And men ride down from the farming town to patrol the lonely coast – Till they hear the thud of a distant gun, or the distant rifles crack, And Australians spring to their arms as one to drive the invaders back.
There'll be no music or martial noise, save the guns to help you through, For a plain and shirt-sleeve job, my boys, is the job that we'll have to do.
And many of those who had learned to shoot – and in learning learned to teach – To the last three men, and the last galoot, shall die on some lonely beach.
But they'll waste their breath in no empty boast, and they'll prove to the world their worth, When the shearers rush to the Eastern Coast, and the miners rush to Perth.
And the man who fights in a Queenscliff fort, or up by Keppel Bay, Will know that his mates at Bunbury are doing their share that day.
There was never a land so great and wide, where the foreign fathers came, That has bred her children so much alike, with their hearts so much the same.
And sons shall fight by the mangrove creeks that lie on the lone East Coast, Who never shall know (or not for weeks) if the rest of Australia's lost.
And far in the future (I see it well, and born of such days as these), There lies an Australia invincible, and mistress of all her seas; With monuments standing on hill and head, where her sons shall point with pride To the names of Australia's bravest dead, carved under the words "Here died.
"


Written by Walter de la Mare | Create an image from this poem

Martha

 "Once.
.
.
Once upon a time.
.
.
" Over and over again, Martha would tell us her stories, In the hazel glen.
Hers were those clear gray eyes You watch, and the story seems Told by their beautifulness Tranquil as dreams.
She'd sit with her two slim hands Clasped round her bended knees; While we on our elbows lolled, And stared at ease.
Her voice and her narrow chin, Her grave small lovely head, Seemed half the meaning Of the words she said.
"Once.
.
.
Once upon a time.
.
.
" Like a dream you dream in the night, Fairies and gnomes stole out In the leaf-green light.
And her beauty far away Would fade, as her voice ran on, Till hazel and summer sun And all were gone:-- All fordone and forgot; And like clouds in the height of the sky, Our hearts stood still in the hush Of an age gone by.
Written by Carl Sandburg | Create an image from this poem

Gargoyle

 I SAW a mouth jeering.
A smile of melted red iron ran over it.
Its laugh was full of nails rattling.
It was a child’s dream of a mouth.
A fist hit the mouth: knuckles of gun-metal driven by an electric wrist and shoulder.
It was a child’s dream of an arm.
The fist hit the mouth over and over, again and again.
The mouth bled melted iron, and laughed its laughter of nails rattling.
And I saw the more the fist pounded the more the mouth laughed.
The fist is pounding and pounding, and the mouth answering.
Written by Robert Frost | Create an image from this poem

In Hardwood Groves

 The same leaves over and over again!
They fall from giving shade above
To make one texture of faded brown
And fit the earth like a leather glove.
Before the leaves can mount again To fill the trees with another shade, They must go down past things coming up.
They must go down into the dark decayed.
They must be pierced by flowers and put Beneath the feet of dancing flowers.
However it is in some other world I know that this is way in ours.
Written by Edward Thomas | Create an image from this poem

The Word

 There are so many things I have forgot, 
That once were much to me, or that were not, 
All lost, as is a childless woman's child 
And its child's children, in the undefiled 
Abyss of what can never be again.
I have forgot, too, names of the mighty men That fought and lost or won in the old wars, Of kings and fiends and gods, and most of the stars.
Some things I have forgot that I forget.
But lesser things there are, remembered yet, Than all the others.
One name that I have not -- Though 'tis an empty thingless name -- forgot Never can die because Spring after Spring Some thrushes learn to say it as they sing.
There is always one at midday saying it clear And tart -- the name, only the name I hear.
While perhaps I am thinking of the elder scent That is like food, or while I am content With the wild rose scent that is like memory, This name suddenly is cried out to me From somewhere in the bushes by a bird Over and over again, a pure thrush word.
Written by Henry Lawson | Create an image from this poem

Australian Engineers

 Ah, well! but the case seems hopeless, and the pen might write in vain; 

The people gabble of old things over and over again.
For the sake of the sleek importer we slave with the pick and the shears, While hundreds of boys in Australia long to be engineers.
A new generation has risen under Australian skies, Boys with the light of genius deep in their dreamy eyes--- Not as of artists or poets with their vain imaginings, But born to be thinkers and doers, and makers of wonderful things.
Born to be builders of vessels in the Harbours of Waste and Loss, That shall carry our goods to the nations, flying the Southern Cross; And fleets that shall guard our seaboard---while the East is backed by the Jews--- Under Australian captains, and manned by Australian crews.
Boys who are slight and quiet, but boys who are strong and true, Dreaming of great inventions---always of something new; With brains untrammelled by training, but quick where reason directs--- Boys with imagination and keen, strong intellects.
They long for the crank and the belting, the gear and the whirring wheel, The stamp of the giant hammer, the glint of the polished steel, For the mould, and the vice, and the turning-lathe ---they are boys who long for the keys To the doors of the world's mechanics and science's mysteries.
They would be makers of fabrics, of cloth for the continents--- Makers of mighty engines and delicate instruments, It is they who would set fair cities on the western plains far out, They who would garden the deserts---it is they who would conquer the drought! They see the dykes to the skyline, where a dust-waste blazes to-day, And they hear the lap of the waters on the miles of sand and clay; They see the rainfall increasing, and the bountiful sweeps of grass, And all the year on the rivers long strings of their barges pass.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
But still are the steamers loading with our timber and wood and gold, To return with the costly shoddy stacked high in the foreign hold, With cardboard boots for our leather, and Brum-magem goods and slops For thin, white-faced Australians to sell in our sordid shops.
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