The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 55
Lines by a New Chum
Lines by a New Chum.
Who did my trusting soul ensnare,
By specious tales of all that's fair,
And bright and good, and rich and rare?
Who, thus allured did bring me here,
Away from friends and country dear,
And promised, oh, so much a year?
Who starved me on the brimy deep,
And forced us all like pigs to slesp,
Whilst insects vile o'er us did creep?
Who, when at last again on shore,
Of boasted work with cash galore,
Did basely cheat me more and more?
Who, not alone in work did cheat,
Poor Unemployed that walk the street—
For all-round swindling you can't beat?
Where is the promised freehold land,
So rich, so cheap, with climate grand,
The homestead for the toil-worn hand?
The land's too dear, we cannot buy,
So like the work is all "my eye,"
The rich may laugh, the poor must cry.
The unemployeds' long bitter cry,
From town and country wailing high,
And wife and children's weary sigh.
The morning comes, the sun shines bright,page break
The birds sing in the pleasant light,
We only wish the day was night.
Who is to blame for our sad state,
Our stranded lives, our luckless fate?
Oh, villains! well you've earned our hate.
Where soulless landsharks rule the land,
And traders cheat on every hand.
Can honest toilers make a stand?
The country holdings worked by tramps—
Poor waifs of swaggers' only, camps;
Their bed of boards, the moon their lamps.
Look in the workshops through the land,
All worked by boys' unpracticed hand,
For greed of gain—all understand.
Poor married man oft forced to roam,
Or starve in towns too well is known,
Where can the married make a home?
Whilst Maories riot in the sun,
All paid from taxes hardly won,
Poor whites may view, not share the fun
What right have Maories to the land?
Not tilled by them, on every hand,
Is what I cannot understand.
My brothers, starving far and near;
Crowding the towns through all the year,
Our right to these waste lands is clear.
Let Maories keep the land they use,
'Tis theirs—their rights we'll not abuse,
But do not our poor wants refuse.
Have we not rights as well as they?page break
Then do us justice whilst you may.
What times are coming? Who can say.
By false pretence you lured us here,
The work, the land, you said 'twas clear
We should enjoy from year to year.
For fish, a snake; for bread a stone.
Rascals! the sin is all your own;
Tour selfishness is plainly shown.
Our time, our life is wasted quite—
The weary day, the weary night—
Better had we not seen the light.
My brothers ! shall we crouch, or fly?
Our cause is just, our children cry.
Then up, and right the wrong—or die.