24 Aug 1863
The return from New Zealand
I told you all some time ago
That I would to New Zealand go,
I had made up my mind;
It was the place to find the gold,
‘Twould beat Victoria twenty-fold,
And leave her far behind.
And fortune did reward my pluck,
And gave me lots of golden luck
Within a river claim;
In which I’ve worked with all my might,
Upon that ground both day and night
For to secure the same.
I don’t mean for to secure the ground,
But gold which in it might be found,
That was my firm desire;
And golden hopes did warm my heart
In place of grog, and did in part
Make up for want of fire.
And now I’ve got all that I can,
I am returned a wiser man
Than when I left the Creek;
And if I could that time redeem,
In river claims I’d not be seen,
Or for such treasures seek.
While I was heaping treasure up,
I deeply drank of misery’s cup,
And heaped up anguish too.
That heap of gold that looked so pure
Bound me in bonds I can’t endure,
But yet I can’t undo.
My wasted form and pallid cheek
To some extent my suffering speak,
But none can tell but I
The bitter suffering which I feel,
Though still endeavoring to conceal,
While yet I long to die.
O gracious powers, restore my health,
But scatter wide my worthless wealth,
My golden bonds undo;
Release me both of gold and pain,
I would be happy once again
And be contented too.