The Patriotic League

A poem by Henry Lawson

Behold! the biased foes of Right
Are conscious of their danger,
They’re startled by the dawning light,
So very long a stranger.
And fearing for their rotting laws,
Whose reign is nearly ended,
To study out the People’s cause
At last they’ve condescended.

“And this they call the ‘People’s Cause’,
Why this is insurrection!
They would revoke the very laws
We made for our protection!
An equal right with us they claim!
They’ll rob us by and by, sir!
We’ll form a league and steal a name
And tell another lie, sir.”

They took to gloss a base intrigue
A name that was demotic.
They stole a name and formed a league
And called it “Patriotic”.
They’ve resurrected ancient lies,
The world had most forgotten,
The liars think the world will rise
To back a Cause that’s rotten.

I know their creed, and know it well,
Too mean are its creators
To hope for heaven, or fear the hell
They’d make for agitators.
Old as the hills, and quite as dense
Though shaking like a jelly.
Time honoured to magnificence,
Religion of the Belly!

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