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The Toilers' Trinity (1898)
" Eight, Eight, Eight," shout it again and again,
lf Eight hours for Labour--be it of body or brain,
Eight hours for Pleasure--physical or of the mind,
Eight Hours for Rest--that brings to Life a blind."
Magic and merciful, the new number--Eight,
Passing, in power, its predecessor's state--
Long merged in mystery, the number "Seven,"
Linked to the old world thought of future heaven.
But the new number--third of Nature's day,
Brings purer passions and new hopes in play ;
Long'may it linger in the crown of Labour's Cause,
Making the mercenary mind of man to pause.
Good, glorious gospel that divides each day in three,
"Three Eights in one" is Labour's creed and Toil's true trinity !
From the Victorian Journal the Tocsin Thursday 21 April 1898, p. 11.
australian traditional songs . . . a selection by mark gregory