The Lion's Whelps

written by George Essex Evans

The Lion's Whelps

— George Essex Evans

There is scarlet on his forehead,
There are scars across his face,
’Tis the bloody dew of battle dripping down, dripping down,
But the war-heart of the Lion
Turns to iron in its place
When he halts to face disaster, when he turns to meet disgrace,
Stung and keen and mettled with the life-blood of his own.
Let the hunters ’ware who flout him,
When he calls his whelps about him,
When he sets the goal before him and he settles to the pace.
Tricked and wounded! Are we beaten
Though they hold our strength at play?
We have faced these things aforetimes, long ago, long ago.
From sunlit Sydney Harbour
And ten thousand miles away,
From the far Canadian forests to the Sounds of Milford Bay,
They have answered, they have answered, and we know the answer now.
From the Britains such as these
Strewn across the world-wide seas
Comes the rally and the bugle-note that makes us one to-day.

Beaten! Let them come against us.
We can meet them one and all.
We have faced the World aforetimes, not in vain, not in vain.
Twice ten thousand hearths be widowed,
Twice ten thousand hearts may fall,
But a million voices answer: “We are ready for the call;
And the sword we draw for Justice shall not see its sheath again,
Nor our cannon cease to thunder
Till we break their strength asunder,
And the Lion’s whelps are round him and the Old Flag over all.”

About the poet

George Essex Evans

George Essex Evans was an Australian poet. Biography Evans was born in London on 18 June 1863. Both his parents were Welsh. Evans's father, John Evans, Q.C., died in 1864 when Evans was only a few months old. John Evans, who was the Treasurer of the Inner Temple and a member of the House of Commons, left his family a fortune of 60 000 pounds. The fortune did not last very long. Consequently, Evans was raised and educated by his mother Mary Ann (née Owen), who was one of the Bowens of Llwynwair, an old Welsh family. Mary Ann was an educated woman, fluent in both Latin and Greek. The family lived in Haverfordwest in Pembrokeshire where Evans attended Haverfordwest Grammar School and...

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