Edwin James Brady

(7 August 1869 - 22 August 1952 / Carcoar / New South Wales)

The Great Grey Water


Now two have met, now two have met,
Who may not meet again—
Two grains of sand, two blades of grass,
Two threads within the skein—
Beside the Great Grey Water.

Two hands to touch, two hearts to touch;
And, here forgathered, we
Will not forget, may not forget,
Where last forgathered three—
Beyond the Great Grey Water.

Two glasses filled, two pipes to fill—
‘To all our fortunes, brother!’
And as they clink—like so—we drink
Fair passage to the other
Across the Great Grey Water.

For three have sailed, and one has sailed,
His sins, like ours, still on him,
God sleep his soul! five oceans roll
Their long weight all upon him.
O God! thy Great Grey Water!

But I am still, and you are still,
And here our chance has flung us;
True comrades we, but…there were three
And one is not among us
Beside the Great Grey Water.

A breathing space, a biding place,
Soft lights and beakers beaded,
Then out again and on again,
Unminded and unheeded,
Across the Great Grey Water.

Now two have met where three have met
With curses or with laughter;
And so our Day shall pass away,
And so our Night come after—
But, ah! the Great Grey Water

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

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