I love to lie under the lemon
That grows by the fountain;
To see the stars flutter and open
Along the blue mountain.
To hear the last wonferful piping
That rises to heaven
(Six quavers to sum up delight in,
And sorrow in seven).
To dream that the mythic wood-women ----
Each brown as the honey
The bees took their toll of, from Hybla,
On days that were sunny --
Come parting the hedge of my garden
To dance a light measure
with soft little feet, on the green sward,
Peak-pointed for pleasure.
While Pan, on a leopard reclining,
And birds on his shoulder,
Gives breath to a flute's wanton sighing
Until their eyes smoulder.
Then, lo, in the pool of the valley
Cries centaur to centaur,
As, plashing, they leap the white moon-buds
The goddess had leant o'er.
They climb the steep sides of the chasm
With hollowy thunder ---
Whole cliffs at the stroke of their hoof-beats
Split, tumbling asunder!
They climb the steep sides of the chasm,
And rush thro' the thicket
That chokes up the pathways that lead to
My green garden-wicket.
They seize on the dancing wood-women,
And kick poor Pan over
The back of his fat, spotted leopard
Right into the clover.
So I wake, and eagerly listen,
But only the fountain,
Still sleeping and sobbing, complains, at
The foot of the mountain.First published
in The Bulletin
, 21 March 1907, and again in the same magazine on 6 January 1910;
and later inPoetry in Australia 1923
;An Australasian Anthology: Australian and New Zealand Poems
edited by Percival Serle, R. H. Croll and Frank Wilmot, 1927;The Poets' Harvest
edited by E. W.Parker, 1943;The Penguin Book of Australian Verse
edited by Harry Heseltine, 1972; andAustralia Fair: Poems and Paintings
edited by Douglas Stewart, 1974.Author reference sites: Austlit
, Australian Dictionary of Biography