Henry Lawson’s death prompted a torrent of lamentation and, despite the distaste of academics and critics, the poet was soon enshrined as a National Treasure. Colin Roderick’s biography is a monument of dedication to the poet.
Harry Peckman, veteran coachman and poet of the scenic wonders of the Blue Mountains, publicly farewelled his friend Henry Lawson in practised balladic strains on 22 September 1922:
‘Tis only two short months ago,
Since last you clasped my hand,
Recalled sweet memories of the past,
And future meetings planned.
But wiser Counsel has decreed
That we no more shall meet,
On this our native golden soil
That smiled beneath your feet.
Alas! your gifted pen lies still,
And hushed your mortal frame,
Australia’s lost a singer sweet,
A poet crowned with fame.