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Musings in Maoriland

Waiting for the Mail

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Waiting for the Mail.

We're bound unto the dear old land with ties of strong affection;
We love our Island Mother still, and would not break the chain
Which bridges all the present with the past in fond connection,
Upon whose span the old and new embrace across the main:
A highway o'er the mountain waves, that plunge in mad commotion,
Is opened up for commerce, and we welcome every sail
Which brings us news of loving friends we left beyond the ocean;
Our hearts beat quick with hope and fear whilst waiting for the mail.
The daring soul who fled afar from poverty's oppression,
To publish 'neath a freer sky proud manhood's rightful claim;

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The wild, unbridled stripling, banished from his sire's possession,
For staining the escutcheon of an ancient honored name,
Are waiting at the post: the youth expecting a "remittance"—
His landlord frowns upon him now, and stops his wine and ale.
The other sent a trifle Home to swell a mother's pittance,
And anxiously awaits affection's answer by the mail.

Yon sentimental dreamer, who seems lost in meditation,
Is thinking of the bright-eyed lass he left far o'er the sea—
"For thee, my girl, I left my home to help to build a nation;
She'll surely send a letter kind, if still she's true to me."
The golden towers of hope spring up before him in his dreaming,
Beside him stands a man whose soul ne'er rises o'er a bale
Or package: still his busy brain for wealth is ever scheming—
With restless eager eye he waits advices by the mail.

That matron with the cheerful smile, who leads the pretty fairy
With flaxen curls, expects a loving message from afar,—
"Oh, Mother! What will Granny send this mail to little Mary?"
And here's a man who wants to know if "Railways" are at par;
Those mushroom politicians are discussing Europe's troubles;
Miss Lackadaisy's eager for Miss Braddon's latest tale;
And Swindleton is wond'ring if some antipodean bubbles
Would float upon the London mart, while waiting for the mail.

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An hour hence, and some will leave the office quite elated,
And some until another mail must linger in suspense,
Whilst others, more unfortunate, to disappointment fated,
Will swear all friendship is a sham, and love a false pretence;
Bright sparks of hope are oft conveyed in some slight simple token,
To light the spirit onward, till "there's no such word as fail;"
And after the "delivery" true hearts are sometimes broken;
But still we nurse each cherished wish, whilst waiting for the mail.