Henry Lawson

The Memories They Bring

I would never waste the hours Of the time that is mine own, Writing verses about flowers For their own sweet sakes alone; Gushing as a schoolgirl gushes Over babies at their best Or as poets trill of thrushes, Larks, and starlings and the rest. I am not a man who praises Beauty that he cannot see, But the buttercups and daisies Bring my childhood back to me; And before life’s bitter battle, That breaks lion hearts and kills, Oh the waratah and wattle Saw my boyhood on the hills. It was Cissy or Cecilia, And I loved her very much, When I wore the white camelia That will wither at a touch. Ah, the fairest chapter closes With lilies white and blue, When the wild days with the roses Cast their glamour over you! Vine leaves fall and laurels wither (Madd’ning drink and pride insane), And the fate that sends us hither Ever takes us back again. Fading flowers slow pulsations Flowers pressed for memory But the red and pink carnations Speak most bitter things to me.

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