For All The Land To See: A Song Of The Tools

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Old 26-Aug-2016
For All The Land To See: A Song Of The Tools

THE CROSS-CUT and the crowbar cross, and hang them on the wall,
And make a greenhide rack to fit the wedges and the maul,
The “done” long-handled shovel and the thong-bound axe that fell,
The crowbar, pick-axe and the “throw”—the axe that morticed well.
The old patched tent and “fly”, bag bunk and pillow of sugee,
The frying-pan and billy-can, for all the land to see.

The cross-cut, after pounds of files, is narrowed down and thin,
With here and there a tooth cut out as th’ curve straightened in,
The axe close to the iron ground, the shovel to the shaft,
The handle from the first worn smooth with sweat and dust and graft.
The maul and wedges burred and split, spell bravest history—
These were the arms our fathers bore, for none but they to see.

Then look you round on all that is, on cities proud and fair,
And look you westward from the range—towns, farms and homesteads there.
Then hurry to a place you know lest you should be too late,
And clear the scrub some little space—small place, say—three-by eight.
A blackened post stump stands where four rough panels used to be
And there take off your panama where none but God might see.
by Henry Lawson

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