The Secret Key and Other Verses

Thomas Joseph Byrnes

George Essex Evans

GOD gave him gifts: nor gave in vain
The great heart and the master-brain
To dream, to battle, to attain,
                To storm the height.
The power that all men strive to gain
                Was his by right.

O saddest Spring in all the land!
O Mystery, hard to understand—
When, at the stern unknown command,
                With icy breath,
Fate placed within his fearless hand
                The gift of Death!

Calm be his sleep who lived to dare.
Go, say a patriot slumbers there
Whose brows were never bent to wear
                His loftiest fame,
Yet wrote on Queensland’s page a rare—
                A fadeless name!

He fought his fight: he won his goal.
His name is on the battle-scroll;
And, whilst beyond our weak control
                The tears we shed
Well deep within a Nation’s soul,
                He is not dead.

The Secret Key and Other Verses - Contents

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