The Axeman

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis 1876 (Auburn) – 1938 (Melbourne)



High on the hills, where the tall trees grow,
There lives an axeman that 1 know.
From his little hut by a ferny creek,
Day after day, week after week,
He goes each morn with his shining axe,
Trudging along by the forest tracks;
And he chops and he chops     till the daylight goes
High on the hills, where the blue-gum grows.

(Chip! . . Chop! . . Chip! . . Chop!)
There's a log to move and a branch to lop.
Now to the felling!  His sharp axe bites
Into a tree on the forest heights,
And scarce for a breath does the axeman stop-
(Chip! . . Chop! . . Chip! . . Chop!)
Bell-birds watch him; and in the fern
Wallabies listen awhile, and turn
Back through the bracken, and off they hop.
(Chip! . . Chop! . . Chip! . -. Chop!)
Patient and tireless, blow on blow
The axeman swings as the minutes go;
While the echoes ring from the mountain-top.
(Chip! . . Chop! . . Chip! . . Chop!)

Round about him the. rabbits play,
Skipping and scampering all the day,
And the sweet young grass by the logs they crop.
(Chip! . . Chop! . . Chip! . . Chop!)

Crimson parrots above him climb,
The Axeman

Chattering, chattering all the time,
As down from the branches the twigs they drop.
(Chip! . . Chop! . . Chip!          Chop!)
Steadily, surely, on he goes,
Shaking the tree with his mighty blows:
There's never a pause and there's never a stop.
(Chip! . . Chop! . . Chip! . . Chop!)

Out from the bush beyond is heard
The swaggering song of the butcher-bird
Seeking a joint for his butcher's shop.
(Chip! . . Chop! . . Chip! . . Chop!)
Deeper and deeper the cut creeps in,
While the parrots shriek with a deafening din,
And the chips fly out with a flip and a flop.
(Chip!     Chop!       Chip!      Chop!)
Yellow robins come  flocking round,
Watching the chips  as they fall to ground,
Darting to catch the g ubs that drop.
(Chip! . . Chop! . . Chip!    . . Chop!)

The blows come quicker. The   axe~biade hums,
Stand well back, there, before she comes!
Hark! How the splinters crack and pop-
(Chip! . . Chop! . . Chip! . . Chop!)
Listen!  Listen!  She's creaking now!
Look, high up, at that trembling bough!
Another second, and down she'll smash,
Shaking the earth with a mighty crash;
Look at her! Look at her! (Chip!      Chop!
Chip! . . . . . . . .Chip!)
              Wee - E - E - E - E - E --
                                               FLOP!

Font size:
Collection  PDF     
 

Submitted on May 13, 2011

Modified on March 05, 2023

2:00 min read
82

Quick analysis:

Scheme aabbccdd EeffeEggeeaaeE hheE ig ieeddeE jjeEkkeellee mmeEnnooexxe
Closest metre Iambic tetrameter
Characters 2,281
Words 395
Stanzas 7
Stanza Lengths 8, 14, 4, 2, 7, 12, 12

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis, better known as C. J. Dennis, was an Australian poet known for his humorous poems, especially "The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke", published in the early 20th century. Though Dennis's work is less well known today, his 1915 publication of The Sentimental Bloke sold 65,000 copies in its first year, and by 1917 he was the most prosperous poet in Australian history. Together with Banjo Paterson and Henry Lawson, both of whom he had collaborated with, he is often considered among Australia's three most famous poets. While attributed to Lawson by 1911, Dennis later claimed he himself was the 'laureate of the larrikin'. When he died at the age of 61, the Prime Minister of Australia Joseph Lyons suggested he was destined to be remembered as the 'Australian Robert Burns'. more…

All Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis poems | Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis Books

1 fan

Discuss the poem The Axeman with the community...

0 Comments

    Translation

    Find a translation for this poem in other languages:

    Select another language:

    • - Select -
    • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
    • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
    • Español (Spanish)
    • Esperanto (Esperanto)
    • 日本語 (Japanese)
    • Português (Portuguese)
    • Deutsch (German)
    • العربية (Arabic)
    • Français (French)
    • Русский (Russian)
    • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
    • 한국어 (Korean)
    • עברית (Hebrew)
    • Gaeilge (Irish)
    • Українська (Ukrainian)
    • اردو (Urdu)
    • Magyar (Hungarian)
    • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
    • Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Italiano (Italian)
    • தமிழ் (Tamil)
    • Türkçe (Turkish)
    • తెలుగు (Telugu)
    • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
    • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
    • Čeština (Czech)
    • Polski (Polish)
    • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Românește (Romanian)
    • Nederlands (Dutch)
    • Ελληνικά (Greek)
    • Latinum (Latin)
    • Svenska (Swedish)
    • Dansk (Danish)
    • Suomi (Finnish)
    • فارسی (Persian)
    • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
    • հայերեն (Armenian)
    • Norsk (Norwegian)
    • English (English)

    Citation

    Use the citation below to add this poem to your bibliography:

    Style:MLAChicagoAPA

    "The Axeman" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 24 Apr. 2024. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/6563/the-axeman>.

    Become a member!

    Join our community of poets and poetry lovers to share your work and offer feedback and encouragement to writers all over the world!

    More poems by

    Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis

    »

    April 2024

    Poetry Contest

    Join our monthly contest for an opportunity to win cash prizes and attain global acclaim for your talent.
    6
    days
    22
    hours
    39
    minutes

    Special Program

    Earn Rewards!

    Unlock exciting rewards such as a free mug and free contest pass by commenting on fellow members' poems today!

    Browse Poetry.com

    Quiz

    Are you a poetry master?

    »
    Which author is considered to be Scotland’s national poet?
    A Robert Louis Stevenson
    B Edwin Morgan
    C Danny Boyle
    D Robert Burns