Ethel Castilla poems

Ethel Castilla(19 June 1861 - / Kyneton / Victoria / Australia)
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An Australian Girl

- by Ethel Castilla 22

"She's pretty to walk with,
And witty to talk with,
And pleasant, too, to think on."
Sir John Suckling.

She has a beauty of her own,
A beauty of a paler tone
Than English belles;
Yet southern sun and southern air
Have kissed her cheeks, until they wear
The dainty tints that oft appear
On rosy shells.

Her frank, clear eyes bespeak a mind
Old-world traditions fail to bind.
She is not shy
Or bold, but simply self-possessed;
Her independence adds a zest
Unto her speech, her piquant jest,
Her quaint reply.

O'er classic volumes she will pore
With joy; and true scholastic lore
Will often gain.
In sports she bears away the bell,
Nor, under music's siren spell,
To dance divinely, flirt as well,
Does she disdain.

A Song of Sydney

- by Ethel Castilla 10

(1894)

High headlands all jealously hide thee,
O fairest of sea-girdled towns!
Thine Ocean-spouse smileth beside thee,
While each headland threatens and frowns.
Like Venice, upheld on sea-pinion,
And fated to reign o'er the free,
Thou wearest, in sign of dominion,
The zone of the sea.

No winter thy fertile slope hardens,
O new Florence, set in the South!
All lands give their flowers to thy gardens,
That glow to thy bright harbour's mouth;
The waratah and England's red roses
With stately magnolias entwine,
Gay sunflowers fill sea-scented closes,
All sweet with woodbine.

Thy harbour's fair flower-crowned islands
See flags of all countries unfurled,
Thou smilest from green, sunlit highlands
To open thine arms to the world!
Dark East's and fair West's emulations
Resound from each hill-shadowed quay,
And over the songs of all nations,
The voice of the sea.

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