Trumper by Victor Daley

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"Trumper is an artist. Some day someone will paint his portrait; it will be hung in a National Portrait Gallery; he will he dressed in white, with his splendid neck bared to the wind, standing on short green grass against a blue sky; he will be waiting for the ball, the orchestra to strike up." - Mrs. C. B. Fry in an English periodical.

Ho Statesmen, Patriots, Bards make way!
   Your fame has sunk to zero:
For Victor Trumpet is to-day
   Our one Australian Hero.

High purpose glitters in his eye,
   He scorns the filthy dollar;
His splendid neck, says Mrs. Fry,
   Is innocent of collar.

He stands upon the short green grass,
   Superb, and seems to be now
A nobler young Leonidas
   At our Thermopylae now.

Is there not, haply, in the land
   Some native-born Murillo
To paint, in colors rich and grand.
   This Wielder of the Willow?

Nay, rather let a statue be
   Erected his renown to,
That future citizens might see
   The gods their sires bowed down to.

Happy the man who while alive
   Obtains his meed of glory!
His name for seasons will survive
   In fable, song and story.

Evoe Trumper! As for me
   It all ends with the moral
That Fame grows on the Willow Tree
   And no more on the Laurel.

First published in The Bulletin, 3 March 1904

Author reference sites: Austlit, Australian Dictionary of Biography, Australian Poetry Library

See also.

Note: the subject of this poem is, of course, Victor Trumper, the great Australian Test batsman.

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on March 3, 2011 6:34 AM.

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