The Distant Drum

Henry Lawson, 1887

      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.