Henry Lawson

(17 June 1867 – 2 September 1922 / Grenfell, New South Wales)

The Glass On The Bar



Three bushmen one morning rode up to an inn,
And one of them called for the drinks with a grin;
They'd only returned from a trip to the North,
And, eager to greet them, the landlord came forth.
He absently poured out a glass of Three Star.
And set down that drink with the rest on the bar.

`There, that is for Harry,' he said, `and it's queer,
'Tis the very same glass that he drank from last year;
His name's on the glass, you can read it like print,
He scratched it himself with an old piece of flint;
I remember his drink -- it was always Three Star' --
And the landlord looked out through the door of the bar.

He looked at the horses, and counted but three:
`You were always together -- where's Harry?' cried he.
Oh, sadly they looked at the glass as they said,
`You may put it away, for our old mate is dead;'
But one, gazing out o'er the ridges afar,
Said, `We owe him a shout -- leave the glass on the bar.'

They thought of the far-away grave on the plain,
They thought of the comrade who came not again,
They lifted their glasses, and sadly they said:
`We drink to the name of the mate who is dead.'
And the sunlight streamed in, and a light like a star
Seemed to glow in the depth of the glass on the bar.

And still in that shanty a tumbler is seen,
It stands by the clock, ever polished and clean;
And often the strangers will read as they pass
The name of a bushman engraved on the glass;
And though on the shelf but a dozen there are,
That glass never stands with the rest on the bar.

Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002

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