The patient Earth spins on among the stars
Like an old lady in the Halls of Space,
Whose candles -- set on Heaven's window bars --
Wonder and wink at her excessive pace.
She mends Time's garments with her age-long thread,
And patches Knowledge with forgotten lore
Dropped on the threshold by the ones who've fled
Out of this life through the grave's narrow door.
On, on she spins with dignity and grace,
Crushing relentlessly our faintest hopes,
Whilst grave astronomers examine Space
For explanations, with long telescopes.
The Wind at intervals on air will croon
For her to spin to, but she goes on still,
When all is silent and the clown-faced Moon
Gazes and gapes above a sleeping hill.
I've often wondered why she never tires,
And why her candles -- high on Heaven's bars --
Don't go right out like ordinary fires,
Or cheap gas-stoves -- or threepenny cigars.First published
in The Bulletin
, 18 March 1909Author:
Ernest Francis O'Ferrall (1881-1925) was born in Melbourne and was educated at the Christian Brothers' College in East Melbourne. After publishing his stories and poems in such magazines as The Bulletin
, The Gadfly
, and Steele Rudd's Magazine
, he joined the full-time staff of The Bulletin
, in Sydney, in 1907. He published much light verse under his own name, and that of "Kodak" as well as 35 short stories in the Lone Hand
. In 1922 O'Ferrall moved to Smith's Weekly, but the work was arduous and he wasn't happy. He died of tuberculosis in Sydney on 1925.Author reference sites
, Australian Dictionary of Biography