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Henry Lawson (Генри Лоусон)


The Men We Might Have Been


When God’s wrath-cloud is o’er me, 
Affrighting heart and mind; 
When days seem dark before me, 
And days seem black behind; 
Those friends who think they know me -- 
Who deem their insight keen -- 
They ne’er forget to show me 
The man I might have been. 

He’s rich and independent, 
Or rising fast to fame; 
His bright star is ascendant, 
The country knows his name; 
His houses and his gardens 
Are splendid to be seen; 
His fault the wise world pardons -- 
The man I might have been. 

His fame and fortune haunt me; 
His virtues wave me back; 
His name and prestige daunt me 
When I would take the track; 
But you, my friend true-hearted -- 
God keep our friendship green! -- 
You know how I was parted 
From all I might have been. 

But what avails the ache of 
Remorse or weak regret? 
We’ll battle for the sake of 
The men we might be yet! 
We’ll strive to keep in sight of 
The brave, the true, and clean, 
And triumph yet in spite of 
The men we might have been.



Henry Lawson's other poems:
  1. Wide Lies Australia
  2. To an Old Mate
  3. The League of Nations
  4. The Song of the Darling River
  5. The Great Grey Plain


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