Heed Not!

A poem by Henry Lawson

Heed not the cock-sure tourist,
Seeing with English eyes;
Stroked at the banquet table
Still, with the old stock lies,
Pet of a social circle,
Guest in a garden fair,
Free of the first-class carriage,
He learns no Australia there.

Heed not the Southern humbugs
By the first saloons who come,
From his work in the wide, hot scrub-lands
The Australian goes not home.
Give them the toadies’ knighthood,
Fit for the souls they’ve got;
Fear not to shame Australia
For Australia knows them not.

Heed not the Sydney ‘dailies,’
Naught for the land they do;
Heed not the Melbourne street crowd,
For they know no more than you!
Pent in the coastal cities,
Still on the old-world track,
They know naught of Australia,
Of the heart of the great Out-Back.

But wait for the voice that gathers
Strength by the western creeks!
Heed ye the Out-Back shearers,
List when the Great Bush speaks!
Heed ye the black-sheep, working
His own salvation free,
And Oh! heed ye the sons of the exiles
When they speak of the things to be!

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