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Andrew Barton Paterson (Эндрю Бартон Патерсон)

The Pannikin Poet

There’s nothing here sublime, 
But just a roving rhyme, 
Run off to pass the time, 
With nought titanic in. 
The theme that it supports, 
And, though it treats of quarts, 
It’s bare of golden thoughts -- 
It’s just a pannikin. 

I think it’s rather hard 
That each Australian bard -- 
Each wan, poetic card -- 
With thoughts galvanic in 
His fiery thought alight, 
In wild aerial flight, 
Will sit him down and write 
About a pannikin. 

He makes some new-chum fare 
From out his English lair 
To hunt the native bear, 
That curious mannikin; 
And then the times get bad 
That wandering English lad 
Writes out a message sad 
Upon his pannikin: 

”O mother, think of me 
Beneath the wattle tree” 
(For you may bet that he 
Will drag the wattle in) 
”O mother, here I think 
That I shall have to sink, 
There ain’t a single drink 
The water-bottle in.” 

The dingo homeward hies, 
The sooty crows uprise 
And caw their fierce surprise 
A tone Satanic in; 
And bearded bushmen tread 
Around the sleeper’s head -- 
”See here -- the bloke is dead! 
Now where’s his pannikin?” 

They read his words and weep, 
And lay him down to sleep 
Where wattle branches sweep, 
A style mechanic in; 
And, reader, that’s the way 
The poets of today 
Spin out their little lay 
About a pannikin.

Andrew Barton Paterson's other poems:
  1. On Kiley's Run
  2. The Rum Parade
  3. The Man from Snowy River
  4. A Singer of the Bush
  5. The Fitzroy Blacksmith

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