Henry Lawson

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

Freedom On The Wallaby - Poem by Henry Lawson

Australia's a big country
An' Freedom's humping bluey,
An' Freedom's on the wallaby
Oh! don't you hear 'er cooey?
She's just begun to boomerang,
She'll knock the tyrants silly,
She's goin' to light another fire
And boil another billy.

Our fathers toiled for bitter bread
While loafers thrived beside 'em,
But food to eat and clothes to wear,
Their native land denied 'em.
An' so they left their native land
In spite of their devotion,
An' so they came, or if they stole,
Were sent across the ocean.

Then Freedom couldn't stand the glare
O' Royalty's regalia,
She left the loafers where they were,
An' came out to Australia.
But now across the mighty main
The chains have come ter bind her –
She little thought to see again
The wrongs she left behind her.

Our parents toil'd to make a home –
Hard grubbin 'twas an' clearin' –
They wasn't crowded much with lords
When they was pioneering.
But now that we have made the land
A garden full of promise,
Old Greed must crook 'is dirty hand
And come ter take it from us.

So we must fly a rebel flag,
As others did before us,
And we must sing a rebel song
And join in rebel chorus.
We'll make the tyrants feel the sting
O' those that they would throttle;
They needn't say the fault is ours
If blood should stain the wattle!


Comments about Freedom On The Wallaby by Henry Lawson

  • Terry Craddock (5/21/2015 7:01:00 PM)


    A beautiful folk tail set with colonial language, defining the making of Australia, the breaking in of a Pacific nation, and the national pride in determination; to retain freedom and a good quality of life for the descendants of colonists who broke the country in. A wonderful colourful write by Henry Lawson, defining at the time of writing, what it was to be an Australian citizen proud of establishing a new civilized nation. Worth reading several times to appreciate the Australian colloquial language. I love Lawson's best poverty with a passion. (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: freedom, greed, food, ocean, song, fire, home, light



Poem Submitted: Thursday, January 1, 2004



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