The Australian Emigrant
A bark went forth, with the morning's smile,
That bore the maids of the western isle
Far, where the southern summers shine
On the glorious world beyond the line.
Theirs was a weary lot of toil,
And their hopes were turned to a better soil,
While their tears were shed for the island-shore —
They should look on its greenness never more!
But one was there — who shed no tears! —
A girl, in the blossom of her years; —
Yet bloom had she none from the roses caught,
For her cheek was withered with early thought, —
And her young brow bore the written doom
Of a lonely heart and a distant tomb; —
But still, in the light of her starry eye,
There shone a glory that could not die!
Silent she gazed on the shore and sea, —
And ever her glance was bright and free,
Like a spirit's, bound by no kindred ties, —
(For she had none beneath the skies!)
Till the mountains faded in misty blue, —
And louder the grief around her grew.
Then, turned the maid to that mourning throng, —
And poured the power of her soul in song!
How sadly mixed was that parting strain,
That told of the talent given in vain,
And the wisdom born of deep despair: —
With the tone of triumph blending there,
Through faintest fall and through wildest swell
Was heard the voice of the heart's farewell, —
As if the dream on her memory hung
Of a wasted love! — and thus she sung: —
" Whence flow these floods of sorrow? —
O, my gentle sisters, tell! —
Do the heart's deep fountains send their streams
To bid the land farewell?
Like a shadow passing from us
Is each mighty mountain's brow, —
But earth — the wide green earth — is ours, —
We have no country now!
But, oh! the old home track,
Where our first affections rest!
Alas! no time shall give them back —
Our earliest and our best!
" Oh! MAN may grieve to sever
From the hearth or from the soil, —
For still some hope, some right, was his,
Which lived through want and toil; —
The dwellers of the forest,
THEY may mourn their leafy lair; —
But why should WOMAN weep her land?
She has no portion there.
Woe — woe for deeds of worth,
That were only paid with ill! —
For to her the homes of earth
Are the house of bondage, still!"
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