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Spread The Truth !

A Poem By Henry Lawson

Brave the anger of the wealthy ! Scorn their bitter lying spite !
Pen the Truth in simple language, when you know that you are right !
And they'll read it by the slush-lamps in the station huts at night.

I have seen the People's triumph in the visions of my dreams.
It is pictured by the camp-fires down the lonely western streams ;
And the teamsters talk about it as they tramp beside their teams.

Write the Truth in simple language and you shall not write in vain !
Sing a ringing song of freedom and you'll hear the same refrain
Where the drovers ride together far across the western plain.

Write of wrongs that you are hating with the grand old burning hate !
For the lonely digger reads it when the western day is late,
And he marks it in the paper he is sending to his mate.

Write the Truth in simple language when you feel it in your breast :
It will reach the far selections in the wide Australian west
Where the bushmen yarn together on a sunny days of rest.

Oh ! the workers new religion spreads beneath the southern skies,
And the bearded fathers read it for its words are kind and wise,
And the little children listen to the Truth with wond'ring eyes.


From The Worker Saturday 22 August 1891.

Jack Cornstalk.
Brisbane, August, 1891.

The poem was later published in the Windsor and Richmond Gazette Saturday 24 October 1891 (under the title Pen the Truth) and the Weekly Herald Friday 12 October 1894.


australian traditional songs . . . a selection by mark gregory