The Singing Garden

The Wattle Bird

C.J. Dennis

WHERE the blossom glows I follow,
    Sipping nectar as I go.
Timbered hill and wooded hollow,
    Shore and scrub-land, these I know;
Following the floral river
    Flowing down a scented land,
Voyage I, where the Great Giver
    Strews His gifts on every hand.

Where my honey-sipping cousins
    Fill the day with melody—
Tho’ I count them in their dozens—
    Song, alas, is not for me.
But, these meeker minstrels scorning,
    Rather am I prone to brag;
To the chorus of the morning
    Shouting, “Quock! Up with the rag!”

These my cousins, pert or gracious,
    Trim or tuneful, claim all man’s
Admiration; I, pugnacious
    King of honey-eating clans,
Ever bragging, ever brawling,
    Seem to flaunt the bully’s air;
While my rough, discordant calling
    Matches ill my dainty fare.

Yet, by wooded hill and hollow,
    He, the Giver, knows full well—
As His bounteous way I follow—
    All a grateful heart would tell.
Where the floral stream, o’erflowing
    Banksia boughs and wattle banks,
Spills its beauty, song not knowing,
    Pour I forth my raucous thanks.

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