The Station Bell by Ethel Mills

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Clang, clang, goes the station bell;
   Six o'clock, and the work is done.
Lily buds in the bathing pool
   All aglow from the setting sun,
Slanting rays thro' the willow boughs,
   Woolshed windows a blaze of gold,
While afar in the myall scrub
   Sweet night flowers to the dark unfold.

"Home! home!" says the station bell,     
   Silhouetted against the sky;
Tired horses and weary men
   Pass the gate of the stockyard by.
Thro' the trees by the winding creek   
   Cottage windows are all aglow;
Across the door of one firelit room
   A woman's figure flits to and fro.

"Night comes," says the station bell,
   Ringing out on the scented air;
Far away in the forest's heart
   A dingo howls in his secret lair;
Over the trees and the clustered roofs
   A white bird flies with a mournful cry,   
That mingies sweet with the crooning song
   A mother sings as a lullaby.

"Rest, rest," says the station bell;   
   It echoes even across the hill,
Where the graves of the station dead
   Are green with grass --- Is their sleep so still
That they are not stirred by the music sweet
   Of children's voices in mirthful play,     
Or the well-known clang as the station bell
   Rings "Angelus" for the workers' day?  

First published in The Queenslander, 8 April 1899

Author: Ethel Mills (1878? - ??) was the sister of Mabel Forrest.  Other than that little is known about the author of this poem.

Author reference sites: Austlit

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on April 8, 2011 8:24 AM.

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