Canadians

Original Text: 
Fair Girls and Gray Horses, With Other Verses (Sydney: Angus and Robertson, 1958). PR 6029 .G4 F3 1958 Robarts Library
1With arrows on their quarters and with numbers on their hoofs,
2With the trampling sound of twenty that re-echoes in the roofs,
3Low of crest and dull of coat, wan and wild of eye,
4Through our English village the Canadians go by.
5Shying at a passing cart, swerving from a car,
6Tossing up an anxious head to flaunt a snowy star,
7Racking at a Yankee gait, reaching at the rein,
8Twenty raw Canadians are tasting life again!
9Hollow-necked and hollow-flanked, lean of rib and hip,
10Strained and sick and weary with the wallow of the ship,
11Glad to smell the turf again, hear the robin's call,
12Tread again the country road they lost at Montreal!
13Fate my bring the dule and woe; better steeds than they
14Sleep beside the English guns a hundred leagues away;
15But till war hath need of them, lightly lie their reins,
16Softly fall the feet of them along the English lanes.
Publication Start Year: 
1898
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
2004