The Crazy World

Original Text: 
The Complete Poetical Works of William Gay , ed. J. Glen Oliphant (Melbourne: Thomas C. Lothian, 1911): 58-59. Internet Archive. Sydney Electronic Text and Image Service (SETIS), digital text sponsored by AustLit:
1The World did say to me,
2    "My bread thou shalt not eat,
3I have no place for thee
4    In house nor field nor street.
5"I have on land nor sea
6    For thee nor home nor bread;
7I scarce can give to thee
8    A grave when thou art dead."
9"O crazy World," said I,
10    "What is it thou canst give,
11Which wanting, I must die,
12    Or having, I shall live?
13"When thou thy all hast spent,
14    And all thy harvests cease,
15I still have nutriment
16    That groweth by decrease.
17"Thy streets will pass away,
18    Thy towers of steel be rust,
19Thy heights to plains decay,
20    Thyself be wandering dust.
21"But I go ever on,
22    I mount from prime to prime,
23From an eternal throne
24    I govern Chance and Time.
25"Then, crazy World," said I,
26    "What is it thou canst give,
27Which wanting, I must die,
28    Or having, I shall live?"
Publication Start Year: 
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
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