Works in the Herald 1938
GREY THRUSH AT THE DOOR
"Swe-e-et! Swe-e-et!" Low at first and flattering,
Full of soft seductiveness on a wheedling note.
Who comes in mercy now, crumbs of comfort scattering
For a grey bird pleading from a cold, cold throat?
Just a thread of tallow-fat, just a scrap of meat!
Grey thrush is at the door. "Swe-e-et! Swe-e-et!"
Grey bird, friendly bird, merry bird in summer time,
For summer is a merry time, full of tuneful mirth.
Sunny days are singing days. But winter is a glummer time
With lean days of scant fare; frost has locked the earth.
Song goes as sun goes, and harshly drives the sleet.
Where comes the almoner? "Swe-e-et! Swe-e-et!"
"Sweet! Sweet!" Now it grows imperious:
A short call, a loud call, impatience in its tone.
Why am I left lingering? See, my plight is serious.
A poor bird all forlorn, starving and alone.
Grey Thrush is a-hungering, begging scraps to eat.
It's far beyond my breakfast time! "Sweet! Sweet!"
Now a footstep on the floor. Now a sudden fluttering,
And Grey Thrush is waiting there beside the open door.
Kookaburra cocks an eye; greedily he's muttering;
But grey bird is first to swoop upon the proffered store,
A scrap of song in gratitude, then up, and off, away.
And the mendicant has vanished till another frosty day.
Herald, 7 May 1938, p4