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We Bushmen Know (1896)

What's the use of writing bush,
Though editors demand it,
For city folks and " cockatoos,"
Who cannot understand it !--Henry Lawson.


We bushmen know what Henry means,
And understand his writing ;
For he expresses what we feel--
And does it without skiting,

And we advise our only bard,
And earnestly entreat him,
To heed not soulless city folks
Who can't or will not greet him.

They've never left the, crowded street,
And haven't got a notion
About the weird and solemn bush--
The pathos and emotion

And " cockatoos " are far too dull
To grasp a poet's saying,
And think of nought but cows and pigs,
And where their hens are laying.

So why lament and get morose
Because those heartless tinkers
Can't understand the soulful songs
So loved by men and thinkers.

We bushmen know what Henry means,
And always feel delighted
When, at the lonely Western camps,
His poems are recited.

140 Oxford-street, Sydney.


From the Wagga NSW newspaper the Worker Saturday 31 October 1896, p. 2.


australian traditional songs . . . a selection by mark gregory