Ninox novaeseelandiae  

Southern Boobook (Ninox novaeseelandiae)
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© Larry Dunis 2004
Arana Hills, QLD (Apr, 2004)

The Bookbook Owl

NOT for any airs and graces
When, to lonely, silent places
Men return in memory,
Come these kindly thoughts of me.
But they hear again my calling
Where the dappled moonlight, falling
'Mid the shadows of the gums,
Weaves strange patterns; and there comes,
Blending with the hobble's jingle,
As the faint bush odours mingle
With the scented camp-fire smoke,
Suddenly my call--

Now a weary swag man camping
After miles of mountain tramping;
Now, 'mid spinifex and sand,
A drover of the overland;
Now a timber-getter sitting
In his hut, the firelight flitting
O'er his old face, lost in dreams;
Now the man who punches teams
Where the blacksoil plains go rolling;
Now a fossicker, pot-holing,
Hopeful ever, ever broke--
Hears me in the night--

Never while one bushland lover
Camps beneath the great sky's cover,
And my call comes once again
To the ears of lonely men:
Never while to silent places
Memory of old days traces
Olden pictures in the fire,
And men dream of youth's desire,
Dream again of youth's high daring:
Never while men yet go faring
Forth beyond the ken of folk,
Shall my night call fail--

The Bookbook Owl
by C J Dennis (1876-1938)
The Singing Garden (1935) p.95.

Southern Boobook (Ninox novaeseelandiae)

Southern Boobook