Henry Lawson

The Distant Drum

Republicans! the time is coming! Listen to the distant drumming! Hearken to the whispers humming In the troubled atmosphere. Ye are born to do the toiling; On and on and no recoiling! To the fighting, to the foiling Of the wrongs that wrong us here. Let the Loyal laugh and jeer you; Let them in derision cheer you. Still the cowards show they fear you By their deeds and all they say. Let Britannia rule for ever O’er the wave; but never, never! Rule a land great oceans sever Fifteen thousand miles away. Stained by persecution’s fires Thinned of homes and thick with spires, They love the land that bred their sires, Ye the Land that breeds your sons. And your sons shall have the reaping, And your sons shall have the keeping Of your honour while you’re sleeping, Freedom’s vanguard, in your graves.

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