English poetry

Poems in English

Jim Carew

Jim Carew

Born of a thoroughbred English race,
Well proportioned and closely knit,
Neat, slim figure and handsome face,
Always ready and always fit,
Hardy and wiry of limb and thew,
That was the ne’er-do-well Jim Carew.
One of the sons of the good old land
Many a year since his like was known;
Never a game but he took command,
Never a sport but he held his own;
Gained at his college a triple blue
Good as they make them was Jim Carew.
Came to grief was it card or horse?
Nobody asked and nobody cared;
Ship him away to the bush of course,
Ne’er-do-well fellows are easily spared;
Only of women a sorrowing few
Wept at parting from Jim Carew.

Gentleman Jiim on the cattle-camp,
Sitting his horse with an easy grace;
But the reckless living has left its stamp
In the deep drawn linies of that handsome face,
And the harder look in those eyes of blue:
Prompt at a quarrel is Jim Carew.

Billy the Lasher was out for gore
Twelve-stone navvy with chest of hair
When he opened out with a hungry roar
On a ten-stone man, it was hardly fair;
But his wife was wise if his face she knew
By the time you were done with him, Jim Carew.
Gentleman Jim in the stockmen’s hut
Works with them, toils with them, side by side;
As to his past well, his lips are shut.
“Gentleman once,” say his mates with pride,
And the wildest Cornstalk can ne’er outdo
In feats of recklessness Jim Carew.

What should he live for? A dull despair!
Drink is his master and drags him down,
Water of Lethe that drowns all care.
Gentleman Jiim has a lot to drown,
And he reigns as king with a drunken crew,
Sinking to misery, Jim Carew.

Such is the end of the ne’er-do-well
Jimmy the Boozer, all down at heel;
But he straightens up when he’s asked to tell
His name and race, and a flash of steel
Still lightens up in those eyes of blue
“I am, or no, I was Jim Carew.”



Poem Jim Carew - Andrew Barton Paterson