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THE GAWLER PRIZE POEM.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE REGISTER.
Sir — No doubt you will be surfeited with communications on this subject; still I humbly venture to offer a few remarks. In the first place, I would refer the "lords
of creation" to the ominous tact, that at another late public competition of poetry (the Burns festival) a lady gained the laurel. The prize poem partakes in an eminent degree of the sweet softness of the female mind, which characteristic almost unfits it for a patriotic song. But yet the time will come, and pray we soon, when nature's luxuriant bounties, and the sweet peace of a 'happy people,' shall be the highest endowments of a country— when physical force will be acknow ledged as an attribute of superiority only when it is allied to 'peace and goodwill to all men,' and the highest patriotism where the bayonet never glitters or the strife of tongues resound. Viewing the subject thus, it may be best to let the Song of Australia breathe the peace and serenity of the coming time, and let the ' ruling of the waves,' ' never shall be slaves,' style be of the past— it will prove Australia the vanguard of real progress and peace. However, the song which obtained the prize is, I think, not quite comme il faut for a ' patriotic song.' It is a very pretty piece of poetry, and no doubt the best of the 98 ; but I humbly submit, the adoption of the first person throughout the song would have im proved it, and the omission of the fleece is scarcely less lamentable. But, Sir, should not the sister colonies have a voice in this matter? And a song worthy to be called "The National Song of Australia" demands a higher remuneration than £10. I am, Sir, &c., A Native of South Australia. Adelaide, October 23, 1859.