John Bernard O'Hara

Flinders

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He left his island home
For leagues of sleepless foam,
For stress of alien seas,
Where wild winds ever blow;
For England's sake he sought
Fresh fields of fame, and fought
A stormy world for these
A hundred years ago.

And where the Austral shore
Heard southward far the roar
Of rising tides that came
From lands of ice and snow,
Beneath a gracious sky
To fadeless memory
He left a deathless name
A hundred years ago.

Yea, left a name sublime
From that wild dawn of Time,
Whose light he haply saw
In supreme sunrise flow,
And from the shadows vast,
That filled the dim dead past,
A brighter glory draw,
A hundred years ago.

Perchance, he saw in dreams
Beside our sunlit streams
In some majestic hour
Old England's banners blow;
Mayhap, the radiant morn
Of this great nation born,
August with perfect power,
A hundred years ago.

We know not, -- yet for thee
Far may the season be,
Whose harp in shameful sleep
Is soundless lying low!
Far be the noteless hour
That holds of fame no flower
For those who dared our deep
A hundred years ago.

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John Bernard O'Hara