Queensland Night

                                       E.M. England

Slowly the hours, with their star-dusted hair,
Trail past the red-faced and broad-bosomed Moon,
There is a stealthy glamour everywhere,
A bright effulgence, like a second noon;
Drugged with the silence and the pure, sweet air,
Blue lilies sleep upon the broad lagoon.

Drowsing night-long, fat cattle in the shade,
(The slate-grey shade of daytime-dusty trees).
Loll in the grass – tall, sunburnt, and wind-swayed
That ripples like lake-waters to my knees;
Curlews' shrill calling down the dim arcade
Of moon-flecked scrubland, floats upon the breeze.

The black strand of the creek winds o'er the plain-
A velvet bow in tresses long grown grey;
I clutch at thought that still eludes my brain,
I strive for speech – and find no words to say!
For so intense a beauty breathes of Pain,
Like wistful music heard from far away!

I know there are green English fields that sleep
In quiet beauty thro' the long twilight,
And scented Eastern darkness e'er will keep
A jewelled snare for passion and delight,
But glory and romance and magic leap
Out of the turquoise bowl of Queensland night!

                                                    E. M. England

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Compare this poem to 'A Queensland Summer Night' written in 1883