Fall In, My Men, Fall In


Henry Lawson

1909


The short hour's halt is ended,
The red gone from the west,
The broken wheel is mended,
And the dead men laid to rest.
Three days have we retreated
The brave old Curse-and-Grin
Outnumbered and defeated
Fall in, my men, fall in.

Poor weary, hungry sinners,
Past caring and past fear,
The camp-fires of the winners
Are gleaming in the rear.
Each day their front advances,
Each day the same old din,
But freedom holds the chances
Fall in, my men, fall in.

Despair's cold fingers searches
The sky is black ahead,
We leave in barns and churches
Our wounded and our dead.
Through cold and rain and darkness
And mire that clogs like sin,
In failure in its starkness
Fall in, my men, fall in.

We go and know not whither,
Nor see the tracks we go
A horseman gaunt shall tell us,
A rain-veiled light shall show.
By wood and swamp and mountain,
The long dark hours begin
Before our fresh wounds stiffen
Fall in, my men, fall in.

With old wounds dully aching
Fall in, my men, fall in
See yonder starlight breaking
Through rifts where storm clouds thin!
See yonder clear sky arching
The distant range upon?
I'll plan while we are marching
Move on, my men - march on!




The Poetry of Henry Lawson
Alphabetical list of poetry - - Chronological list of poetry

Australian Nationalism Information Database - www.ausnatinfo.angelfire.com/~natinfo