The Captive's Complaint by Henry Parkes

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My lady they have torn away;
   My boys are with the slain;
My heart is cold as lifeless clay;  
   My tears but rust my chain.   

The mansion of my forefathers
   Is in the foe's possession;   
My country -- ah! each home of hers
   Is subject to oppression.

My lady -- she may still survive,
   Our children all departed;
Perchance we both remain alive,
   Alike both broken-hearted.

But never more may I behold
   My beautiful oppressed,
The country of the warrior bold,
   Where Freedom's martyrs rest!

Ev'n to my wandering soul in dreams,
   Along my native mountains,
Th' invaders standard, startling, gleams,
   And carnage chokes the fountains!

Oh God! I would not live to see
   To-morrow's sun ascending,
Might I to-night but perish free,
   My country still defending!

First published in The Australasian Chronicle, 5 May 1840;
and later in
Stolen Moments: A Short Series of Poems by Henry Parkes, 1842.

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

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on May 5, 2012 9:44 AM.

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