voices from the past


Whistling Men

by Mary Gilmore (1865-1962)

Australian writer

There came an old man down the road,
 And, O, he whistled fine,
He brought a tune from out the wind
    A wind as cold as brine;
He took the pain from out the world,
    And saved this heart of mine.

And down the stairway by my door,
    Two days ago I heard
A whistling boy come hopping by
    As if he were a bird;
I felt as though I were a leaf
    A happy air had stirred.

God gave the whistling mouth to man
    That he old griefs might drive
Back to the dens from which they came.
    And keep his soul alive.
A whistling man makes life as sweet
    As honey in a hive.

About the Author

See our page on Mary Gilmore. Includes a linked list of all her writing available on our website.

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