Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis

(7 September 1876 - 22 June 1938 / Auburn, South Australia)

A Morning Song - Poem by Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis

The thrush is in the wattle tree, an', 'O, you pretty dear!'
He's callin' to his little wife for all the bush to hear.
He's wantin' all the bush to know about his charmin' hen;
He sings it over fifty times, an' then begins again.
For it's Mornin'! Mornin'! The world is wet with dew,
With tiny drops a-twinkle where the sun comes shinin' thro'.


The thrush is in the wattle tree, red robin's underneath,
The little blue-cap's dodgin' in an' out amongst the heath;
An' they're singin', boy, they're singin' like they'd bust 'emselves to bits;
While, up above, old Laughin' Jack is having forty fits.
For it's Mornin'! Mornin'! The leaves are all ashine:
There's treasure all about the place; an' all of it is mine.


Oh, it's good to be a wealthy man, it's grand to be a king
With mornin' on the forest-land an' joy in everything.
It's fine to be a healthy man with healthy work to do
In the singin' land, the clean land, washed again with dew.
When sunlight slants across the trees, an' birds begin to sing,
Then kings may snore in palaces, but I'm awake - and king.


But the king must cook his breakfast, an' the king must sweep the floor;
Then out with axe on shoulder to his kingdom at the door,
His old dog sportin' on ahead, his troubles all behind,
An' joy mixed in the blood of him because the world is kind.
For it's Mornin'! Mornin'! Time to out an' strive!
Oh, there's not a thing I'm askin' else but just to be alive!


It's cranky moods a man will get an' funny ways of mind;
For I've a memory of one whose thoughts were all unkind:
Who sat an' brooded thro' the night beside the blazin' log,
His home a mirthless, silent house, his only pal a dog.
But it's Mornin'! Mornin'! I nurse no thought but praise,
I've more good friends than I could count, tho' I should count for days.


My friends are in the underbrush, my friends are in the trees,
An' merrily they welcome me with mornin' melodies.
Above, below, from bush an' bough each calls his tuneful part;
An' best of all, one trusty friend is callin' in my heart.
For it's Mornin'! Mornin'! When night's black troubles end.
An' never man was friendless yet who stayed his own good friend.


Ben Murray, he's no friend of mine, an' well I know the same;
But why should I be thinkin' hate, an' nursin' thoughts of blame?
Last evenin' I'd no friend within, but troubles all around,
An' madly thought to fight a man for ten or twenty pound.
But it's Mornin'! Mornin'! my friend within's alive,
An' he'd never risk a twenty - tho' he might consider five.


But where's the call to think of strife with such good things about?
The gum-leaves are a-twinkle as the sun comes peepin' out.
The blue-cap's in an' out the fern, red robin's on the gate,
An' who could hear the song of them a hold a thought of hate?
Oh, it's Mornin'! Mornin'! No time for thinkin' wrong.
An' I'd be scared to strike a man, I feel so awful strong.


Grey thrush is in the wattle, an' it's, 'O, you pretty dear!'
He's callin' to his little wife, an' don't care who should hear
In the great bush, the fresh bush, washed again with dew.
An' my axe is on my shoulder, an' there's work ahead to do.
Oh, it's Mornin'! Singin' Mornin'! in the land I count the best,
An' with the heart an' mind of me I'm singin' with the rest.


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Poem Submitted: Saturday, September 1, 2012



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