The Poems of Mike Lynn
The Poems
Michael Lynn was born in Antrim about 1860, migrated to New Zealand in 1883, married Ellen Walls in 1899, and lived in Hastings till his death in 1941.

His verse as collected here was written from the 1880s to the 1930s. They show that he took a strong but changing interest in his two countries. The attitudes shown in them to gender roles, ethnic differences, and the environment may have been commoner in his day than now!

He worked as axeman, a flaxmiller (possibly the owner of the flaxMill) and later as a carrier.

  1. Lough Beg Shore
  2. In Memorium
  3. Letter To Mother On Hearing Of Brother's Death
  4. How Long (here's to brave Davitt then...)
  5. The Man For Hawkes Bay
  6. The Opening Of The Bar
  7. Lines Composed While Flaxmilling At Pakipaki
  8. If Captain Cook Had Never Landed Here
  9. A Carriers Woorry
  10. Prohibition Or Continuance
  11. Hawkes Bay Election
  12. Lines From The Bush
  13. The Habour Board Election
  14. Hastings Borough Council Election
Lough Beg Shore
Probably written in the 1890s.

Mike was born and lived in Kilcurry, County Antrim in Ulster until he emigrated to New Zealand in 1883, aged 20 years. The Lynn home in Kilcurry was only 4 km from Lough Beg and so Mike and his friends must have spent considerable time, playing, hunting and fishing there.

Some bards express in glowing words the glories of their land,
While others raise their voice and praise heroic statesmen grand
But to them I shall leave the task, let mine be to make known
The charming grace and beauties of my boyhoods happy home
Where Bann's purling waters flow 'twas there I love to stray,
Some joyous hours round sweet Lough Beg I've merrily whirled away.
I've view'd the lakes and rivers grand throughout the Emerald Isle
The Liffey, More, the Lea, the Suir, the Swilley and the Foyle,
Yet all could not compare unto the spot which I adore
Sweet place of mirth that gave me birth
The Banks of Lough Beg Shore.

Lough Beg
The Bann River looking towards Lough Beg.
New Ferry is on the Bann just below the Lough
and Church Island is marked on the right shore.
Oh God when I recall to mind the bliss I did enjoy,
When young and wild I blossomed forth a merry thoughtless boy
With brave friend Dick and cousin Tom and comrades many a score
Some joyful hours I merrily spent around the Annah Shore
With dog and gun around its banks my time it did employ
Or fishing with my hook and line a light gayhearted boy
How oft' I quaffed the poteen clean with comrade full of glee
And drank success to Erin's Sons and prayed they'd soon be free
But now och home those days have gone my joyous hours are o'er
Sweet place of mirth that gave me birth
The Banks of Lough Beg Shore.

How oft' I strayed with Nora dear, 'twas there I wooed and won
The fairest of the fairest fair, my own sweet Colleen bawn
When seated fondly side by side, our small boat glides along
And she sheers up my fond heart with her merry laugh and song
And many a glorious moonlight night, round Famed Church Isle I strayed
To meet the boys who feared no noise and hold our night parade
Or with our sweethearts by our sides how oft we'd merrily rove
And many a fond though flattering tale each told his lady love
Though I am doomed to leave my home I love thee more and more
Sweet place of mirth that gave me birth
The Banks of Lough Beg Shore.

Alas unto some distant clime my course I now must steer
Yes fate decrees that I must part with all that life holds dear
The charming maids and dashing blades so loving and so kind
With school mates gay and comrades free I must leave all behind
Fair well brave old friends of mine I'll ever think of you
Oh Nora dear pride of this heart of must I leave thee too
I'll seek a home where freedom shines beyond the surging wave
In that fair land the exiles home sweet refuge of the brave
I'll yet return to thee I trust with wealth and fame galore
Sweet place of mirth that gave me birth
The Banks of Lough Beg Shore.
Im Memorium
Probably written ca 1890.

Written by Mick Lynn Elegiac to the memory of his brother Pat and fondly dedicated to his Mother.

The date of Patrick's death is unknown, but this must have been written between 1884 (when Mike emigrated) and 1898 (when his mother Mary and youngest siblings Annie and Tom emigrated).

Note that at this time his father John was still alive and his brother John, who later emigrated to Australia, was still in Ireland.

Ah Mother Dear, 'Mid grief and tears,
I sadly write today,
An answer to the mournful news
Your letter did convey
That letter I so waited for -
Oh God, it was to come
To bring me news that brother Pat
was in a silent tomb.

Words cant express my feelings sad,
Sweet Mother when I read,
Your painful, dull, heart rending news,
That brother Pat was dead.
But "Father let thy will be done"
'Tis sinful to complain;
Though we deplore, tears cant restore
My brother back again.

His cares of life, thank God, are oe'r
Then grant his soul OLord,
In that bright land of joy and bliss
A glorious, rich reward.
Oh brother dear, when leaving here
To cross the stormy wave
I little thought so soon, alas,
You'd fill an early grave.

Esteemed by all you passed away,
Without a blot or stain;
No selfish mean or paltry act
E'er soiled thy cherished name
Your willing heart was ready still
Your generous aid to lend;
Your pocket always open
To assist a needy friend.

When pain and sickness wore you down
You ne'er did once complain;
But trusted on for brighter days,
Alas that never came
And when you bade your friends farewell
To cross the southern foam
Scarce had you left this sunny clime
On board of ship for home

On Sundays when your friends called round
And dear old comrades met
The first words to each other were;
"Boys, any news from Pat?"
Yes you were generous kind of heart
Beloved by great and small
A pleasing look, a cheerful smile
A jovial word for all

Grant to his soul O Blessed Lord,
A place among the Blest
Where there the wanderer finds a home
The weary are at rest.
And spare my days O Blessed Lord
Sometime to visit there
At brother's grave to shed a tear
And breathe a silent prayer.

Yes Mother dear, I live in hope
To see you all once more
When bright and happier days shall dawn
On Erin's saintly shore
To father dear I send my love
Please to accept the same;
Tell Annie, John and little Tom
I often think of them

These presents small I send them all
Accept them from me here,
As a tribute to the memory
Of our cherished brother dear,
May Heaven aid and bless you all -
Dear parents I have done;
With fond affection I remain
Your ever loving son.
Letter to Mother on Hearing News of Brother's Death
Dear Mother just a word to say your letter I received
In answer to it I must say I sadly felt bereaved
Words cant express my feelings sad dear mother when I read
Your painful dull heartrending news that brother Pat was dead
That letter I so waited for 0 God it was to come
To bring me news that brother Pat was in a silent tomb
But Father let thy will be done 'tis sinful to complain
Though we deplore tears cant restore my brother back again
Yes he was generous kind of heart and loved by great and small
A pleasing look a cheerful smile a jovial word for all
And when he bade us all farewell to cross the surging foam
Scarce had he left this sunny clime on board of ship for home
On Sundays when his friends called round and dear old comrades met
The first words to each other were "boys, any news from Pat".
Grant to his soul 0 Sacred Lord a place among the blessed
Where there the wanderer finds a home the weary are at rest
And spare my days 0 Blessed Lord sometime to visit there
At brothers grave to shed a tear and breathe a fervent prayer
Yes mother dear I live in hopes to see you all once more
When bright and happy days shall dawn on Erin's saintly shore
To father dear I send my love please to accept the same
Tell Annie, John and little Tom I often think of them
The presents small I send them all accept them from me here
As a tribute to the memory of our cherished brother dear
May heaven aid and bless you all dear parents I have done
With fond affection I remain your ever loving son.
How Long, O Lord, How Long?
Probably written about 1895 when Davitt visited New Zealand or 1906/07 after Davitt died.

Michael Davitt (1846-1906):

Born in 1846, died in 1906; joined the Irish Movement (Fenians) in 1865; sentenced to penal servitude for treason and felony in 1870, and served seven and a half years; helped to found the Irish Land League in 1879; arrested and imprisoned for political offenses in 1881 and again in 1883; while in prison elected to Parliament but disqualified by vote of the House; reelected in 1892, but unseated; elected again in 1899. He traveled widely, including to Australia and New Zealand in 1895 where he gave 70 public lectures.

Davitt definitely visited Hawkes Bay on his tour through the Australasian Colonies - see Michael Davitt Museum: "The Hastings Branch of the Irish National Federation League 'Address of Welcome to Michael Davitt'."

The text of the address was kindly transcribed for me by Eoin Hughes of the Michael Davitt museum:

Mr. Michael Davitt, M.P.
Caed Mille Failthe

Dear Sir,

We, the members of the Hastings Branch of The Irish National Federation League, desire to express our great pleasure in extending to you a sincere and hearty welcome to this Province. We also ask you to accept the good wishes of many of our country friends, who are unable to be present to hear you this evening. We have watched with deep interest the noble work done by you, in the great cause of Home Rule for Ireland, and offer you our warmest thanks and sympathy for your unceasing labour. The sufferings undergone by you for your beloved Erin have proved you to be a Prince among Patriots, and though revolting to our common nature they have acted as burning gems to keep alive in our hearts the fire of love for home and the Freedom of Ireland. We cannot allow this opportunity to pass without offering our deepest sympathy for the loss of your beloved daughter, happening too, when you were so many thousands of miles from home.

Recognising, as we do, the great personal sacrifices made by you in the past, and during your present tour through the Australasian Colonies, we beg your acceptance of the accompanying purse and contents as a free gift to yourself and as a small token of our appreciation of you labours. Trusting that your path in the future may be strewn with more roses and fewer thorns than in the past, and that you may long be spared to fight out the noble battle you have undertaken.

We have the honour to remain,

Yours respectfully

Chas.Hughes President
Patk.McCarthy Vice-President
Patk.McMahon Vice-President
Jno.Cullen Treasurer
S.G.Poppelwell Secretary

On behalf of Members
Hastings, Hawke's Bay, N.Z.
25th November, 1895

Printer, Hastings

Then, here's to bold Davitt, God bless him
his proud spirit ne'er was pulled down
His creed was the land of the people
he preached it at Irish Town.
Give help then ye exiles of Erin
no matter on earth where you roam.
To the land of your fathers and also
your brothers and sisters at home.
Then here's to the land of the shamrock
come friends fill your glasses with me
May we see old Erin a nation
contented, rich and free.
--- --- ---
(0 Erin dear don't weep or mourn...)

Ye exiles scattered far and wide
are waiting to come forth
And proudly prove before the world their
courage and their worth
No race is always with the swift
or battle with the strong
How long will might, prevail o'er right
How long, 0 Lord, how long.

Your loyal sons, your daughters fair
are just as good and brave
As those who fought in '98
Your island green to save.
Some of them rot in dungeons vile
some seek beyond the foam
That refuge in a foreign land
they cannot find at home.
When landlords rich are showering thick
like snowflakes o'er the land
And spreading terror, gloom and death
'neath their unholy hand
When want and desolation reigns
Your fertile plains among
Are we to stand this state of things
How long, 0 Lord, how long.
The Man For Hawkes Bay
This poem was published in the "The Daily Telegraph" on Saturday, November 28, 1914.

Skibbereen is a traditional Irish song:

Oh father dear, I oft-times hear you speak of Erin's isle
Her lofty hills, her valleys green, her mountains rude and wild
They say she is a lovely land wherein a saint might dwell
So why did you abandon her, the reason to me tell.

"The Man for Hawkes Bay" is written in the same metre.

Robert McNab was elected Liberal MP for Hawkes Bay in 1914 and died in 1917 (see the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography).

Electors of Hawke's Bay, I ask you all to-day
To think well of the contest now at hand.
Vote for a statesman keen, whose politics are clean
Who'll work to place the people on the land.

Now organize and line, and muster and combine,
Though your colors may be tartan, green or drab;
Now loyally come forth and support a man of worth -
That learned and cultured Bob. McNab.

Ye hardy sons of the toil, and tillers of the soil
Awake and do your duty at the poll;
And vote for him you trust will pass you measures just,
No favor but fair play for one and all.

Support the man who'll fight for justice and for right,
For progress and reform not for grab.
For this worthy man of note I ask you now to vote -
That brilliant politician Bob. McNab.

In the field of literature, of genius, wit and lore,
His name and fame will live in future time;
Upon the scroll of fame he has an honored name,
Which will advertise this fair and sunny clime.

To workers I appeal, those promised a square deal,
I ask not for the crawler or the crab; Vote for the Liberal cause, vote for progressive laws.
Vote for the man who'll make them - Bob McNab.


Hastings, Nov 21st, 1914

The Opening of the Bar
The Pacific Hotel was built in Havelock North and in 1881 moved to the Market Square in Hastings (licencee John Kelly). In 1905 it was owned by Alfred James Ellingham (NZ Cyclopaedia) who in 1906 rebuilt it in brick. It was badly damaged in the 1931 earthquake and restored in 1932 at the cost of 4,200. If "Devoy" was the licencee, Mike's poem was probably written in 1932 after the Hotel was rebuilt.
You citizens of Hastings town, I ask you to attend
And listen to some verses crude, which I have lately penned
In honour of a great event, when our good host Devoy
Invited all his loyal friends, his good cheer to enjoy.
Their friendship and good fellowship, he prayed they long might last
And hoped they'd patronise him well, as they'd done in his past
Most of the townsfolk rallied round, while some came from afar
The occasion was the opening of the new Pacific Bar
The boss he made a happy speech, when Lorry took the chair
Tis really an amusing fact, the way they part their hair
Jim Brown then made a brilliant speech, which I thought rather fine
He talked of old King Billy, and the way he crossed the Boyne
Gilholly then got up and sang, the " Wearing of the Green "
Tan Scanlon danced an Irish Jig none better have I seen
Young Courtny held between his knees, a big five gallon jar
McLarnan sat beside him at the opening of the bar.
We then were asked to drink their health in whiskey wine or beer
I saw Fred Calton near the front along with Wally Cheer
For order and attention then to each I did appeal
When Kirkwood got upon the floor and danced a Highland Reel
Old Bill O'Niell was in good form behind a fat cigar
Talked politics and football at the opening of the bar
To the toast of the fair ladies, Ned Murphy did respond
He loved them all God bless 'en of some I'm likewise fond
Jim Donovan sang a song of home "The Song That Reached My Heart"
Both Mick and Pat and Eddie Cook all took an active part
We had songs and recitations fine, with drinks and toasts golore
Pat danced the Sailors Hornpipe and got a great encore
Old Lorry talked of this and that and lectured on the war
Most of his were fought that night at the opening of the bar
As Lorry seemed to have enough they .took him to the rear
Tom Mulholland then was asked kindly to take the chair
So we drank to Charlie Keenan and we toasted poor old Dan
To his little town Balachy and Muldoon the solid man
I asked the crowd to charge each glass and have a drink with me
'Twill tell you how far gone I was and fairly on the spree
Yes the ghosts of poor old dead beats I had known from near and far
I could see them all around me at the opening of the bar.
Flaxmilling at PakiPaki
Mike's comment that this was "composed many years ago while flaxmilling at Paki Paki", probably places it as written early in the period 1905 to 1925.
The following lines composed many years ago while flaxmilling at Paki Paki.
A supposed letter sent by a young man in our employ named Whelan a young woman from the same district.

Dear miss with all regards thats due a few short lines I'll send to you
In earnest hopes that they'll receive thee as well as they at present leave me.
Having thus begun I'll now make known in brief words how I'm getting on
I want to tell you in this letter what with me is a serious matter
My hearts depressed, my mind's unsteady my brain's confused my head is giddy
I've vainly tried to solve the question, 'tis either love or indigestion
Now what I want to tell you merely ' tis that I love you most sincerely
I wish to settle in New Zealan' and call you shortly Mrs. Whelan
Three acres and a house dear Annie I've partly leased from Tame Honi
I've lately bought and taken over three well bred pigs from Jimmy Glover
We'll get a cow off Bill Maroney thats if he'll trust us for the money
Mick say he'll give us tow for bedding we'd better ask him to the wedding
St. Patricks social if you like it or wish to go I'll buy a ticket
The cost you know will not be heavy we'll get a buggy from old Davey
Tan Russell and the other fellows by jingo won't they all be jealous
Now quietly think these matters over and send an answer to your lover
And if you think I'm talking steady just tidy up and get things ready
Your old folk they in my opinion will look with favour at our union
To morrow night when you are passing I'll meet you at the railway crossing
I fondly hope to see you Annie and hear your views on matrimoney
'Till I express my mind more clearly believe me love I'm yours sincerely

If Captain Cook Had Never Landed Here
My guess is that this was written about 1913 from dates of events in the poem. Some of those mentioned were2:
  • The Boer War finished in 1902
  • Bill Lane - Hastings Mayor 1905-05
  • Hogan - A Police Sergeant in Hastings 1900-14 3
  • Prior Horne - possibly Alexander Horne, Hastings Saddler, 1906
  • Fowler - LW Fowler, Hastings Councillor 1910s and 20s
  • (John) Vigor Brown - Mayor of Napier 1907-33
  • Amy Bock - a woman who lived as a man and was 'uncovered' in 1909 when 'he' was about to be married. A great scandal at the time.
  • Yorkey Smith - probably WH Smith, Hastings Councillor in 1908
  • Bill Hart - Hastings Mayor 1913-17
  • Eustace Lane - stood for MP, independent labour, 1908, but must have been involved in the Napier Harbour
  • Bill Massey - PM 1912-22
  • There is no mention of WW1 and so it was written before 1914
It would be interesting to find out who the other people named were, they seem to be characters around Hastings and Napier.
Friends as we're gathered round, I'll endeavour to expound
Some questions I have asked myself of late,
Of the worry, care and strife, the uncertainties of life
Our destinies, our fortunes and our fates.
Unto this country grand, entitled " Gods Own Land"
From other parts we've drifted year by year
Strange things in life we've seen, might or might not have been
If Captain Cook had never landed here.
Now, would New Zealands sons have taken up their guns?
To race and chase the Boers from off their land,
Would they their names disgrace, had they known it was to place
Some thirty thousand Chinkeys on the land?
Yes good men's blood was spilt upon the trackless veldt
To enrich the Jewish bankers was made clear
Would Little Jackie Hughes have been there and back? God knows
If Captain Cook had never landed here

Would Bill Lane or Paddy Cox, be moping round these blocks
Would Hogan send his Johns along the Beat
And between yourselves and me; do you think that old John Bee
Would run a fancy goods shop down the street ?.
Old Tommy Hey perhaps would sell no trip or chops
Would pork or sausage meat be quite so dear?
And would old Major Green a Sergeant here have been ?.
If Captain Cook had never landed here ?.

Would Sun Hop or Lock Dick Lee sell leak or cabbagee ?.
Would Prior Horn be sitting on his stool ?.
Would Fowler be agoing with the likes of Ikey Cohen ?.
Or would Yorkey Smith be such a blessed fool ?.
Would little Napier town have possessed a Vigor Brown ?.
Would Amy Bock have played her cards so queer ?.
And old Bill Hart I'll swear would never have been a Mayor.
If Captain Cook had never landed here.

Would we've had the Waihi trouble would Ormand win the double?.
Would the butchers go out on strike and call it sport ?.
Would our friend Sir Eustace Lane have water on the brain ?.
Will his Inner Harbour ever reach the Port ?.
Would Frank Bithel or Sam Tang, wade round this place so long ?.
Would Bill Ryder wash his face, say, once a year ?.
Would the man of skite and blow Bill Massey run the Show ?.
If Captain Cook had never landed here ?.

A Carriers Worry
One wintry day midst rain and sleet,
A lady fair walked down the street.
Her smile was bright, alluring sweet, her name was Isobella
"Are you a carrier, sir?" she said,
"I am indeed ma'am that's my trade".
"Well, as you've got no shelter shed please take my umbrella".
And then the lady spoke again.
"You carriers all are honest men, I cant make out these things
but then I'm only a woman".
"You're quite right there ma'am", I replied,
"Our claims and rights are all denied.
Our city fathers on their side, like us are only human.
We pay our rates we foot the bill and grass grows on our footpaths still
I'm almost certain that we'll have strenuous times before us
We hope the clouds will soon roll by and leave a clear and sunny sky
And see with glad and joyful eye the heavens bending o'er us
Now carting pigs midst filth and fleas we know is sure to spread disease
Yet still we do our best to please what' e'er we've got to carry
We've got to bear the battles brunt and ply 'gainst others in the hunt
And do our months of trials stunt to please old Sanatary",
"You're quite right sir in what you say we all have got our debts to pay".
Then as she turned to go away she slipped me half a dollar,
"Go down and have a drink" she said
" 'Twill ease your cough and clear your head".
I bought some sausages instead and kept her umbrella.
Prohibition or Continuance
Probably written about 1910 at the introduction of prohibition.
They say the man who votes for grog
Is nothing but a rotter,
You've got to turn the liqour down and be pussy footer.
The wosers wail, their churches fail
Their efforts now are bent,
In making of the people good by act of Parliament.
God help the land where women claim
The right to wear the trousers,
And make us bend beneath the yoke of hypocrites and Wosers
Now when our soldiers brave come back
The wosers did'nt need 'em
Our soldiers fought and won our rights
And voted for our freedom
Live and let live, thats our creed
We'll treat you like a brother
We'll have our beer, you drink cold tea
And still love one another.
Hawkes Bay Election
Probably 1928
Lyon was a Hastings Councillor and on the Napier Harbour Board 1929-31, he was elected as MP in Auckland in 1935.
Joseph Gordon Coates was Prime Minister from May 1925 until his defeat in November 1927.
The first Labour government under Michael Joseph Savage was elected in 1935 and stayed in power in the following election in 1938.

This was therefore either written for the election in 1928 or that in 1931, most likely 1928 while the memory of Coates was fresh.

(Note that MHR is Member of the House of Representatives.)

Hawkes Bay electors once again you're called again to choose
A future worthy M.H.R. To advocate your views.
To choose a man who knows your wants and means to do his best,
To have those wants attended to and get your wrongs redressed.
In Lyon you have such a man, whom everyone can trust,
To back the Labour Party up in passing measures just.
Ye silly goats who vote for Coates Ah! Don't forget the past
His pledges made have all decayed like leaves before the blast
Ye working men ! Back Lyon Then ! That he may top the Poll
To bring good laws in Labour's Cause, with equal rights for all.
Tis such as he New Zealand wants with spirits staunch and warm.
To firmly pave the path that leads to Progress ! True Reform.
Lines From The Bush
Dear friends as this is Sunday and there's nothing else to do
To while away an idle hour I'll pen some lines to you.
Of course in this outlandish place there's nothing much to tell
Except to say we're in good health and things are going well
I've just looked o'er the local prints and also did peruse
The latest Canterbury Times. And Auckland Weekly News
And lying snugly on my bunk beneath the bright sunbeam
I've finished an Australian yarn known as the Squatters Dream
Now as I sit inhaling here the glorious mountain breeze
And listen to the warbling of the tuis in the trees
I can't help thinking when I take these things upon the whole
An axemans life while in the bush is not the worst of all
At washing too this blessed morn I took an active part
Some towels new I've just put through a flannel and a shirt
One of my mates is washing sox another mending clothes
The third has got a toothache bad the fourth has hurt his nose
And Jack and George are up the gorge with guns resolved to try
To bring the cook material home to make a pigeon pie
The pigs are also numerous here hark, hark, I hear a crash
The dogs encore have just popped o'er a wild boar in the bush
As for the bush 'tis pretty light suffice here to say
If carried as we've begun I think we'll make it pay
Now when I make a tidy cheque of thirty pounds or so
On some fine day I'll call your way and quietly let you know
The cook is getting dinner made he's doing some fast time
So I must put my things away and end this artless rhyme
He has got a solid damper baked a boomer without fail
I'll bet a crown at fourteen pounds it quickly turns the scale
The billies boiled the table's laid the spuds are cooked enough
And pray don't laugh he's just turned off a wopper of a duff
So dinner on the horn has gone I must leave down my pen
With love to all my friends at home, yours truely I remain.
The Harbour Board Election
The Harbour Stakes are on next week the weights have just come out
Two local nags from here are going to run
One of them is a tried one we call him Roman nose
I think whatever beats him is sure to win
Sometimes he runs erratic no doubt but he is swift
Tis not long since he galloped through the mill
To give my own impression I'd say he's rather fine
He's done some solid training on the hill
All is now excitement there's thunder overhead
Everyone is talking of the race
The council staff are busy to help the old ex-mayor
The scavangers are cleaning up the place
So sportsman brave and bold back his colours green and gold
His name and fame will live in some future time
He is neither slow nor sure Been o'er the coarse before
With all good luck to Roman Nose I'll finish up my rhyme.
Hastings Borough Council Election
Probably 1917
William Hart was mayor 1913-17 and again 1921-22
H Ian Simson was mayor 1917-19
(Mr Ian Simpson and Mr W Hart contesting the seat)

Election times are coming on the hawks are flying round
  Our city fathers talk of this and that.
Of theatres grand they've given us also picture shows
  A Steaker waggon shops, and God knows what.
Simpson says he'll give us lights we know he'll give us gas
Good channeling and footpath's he'll put down.
But I've a horse wants feeding and he believes in grass
Besides it helps to beautify the town.
Though rates are more than doubled Bill Hart is not to blame
Sure the grass grows on our footpaths, on our footpaths just the same
And the smoke goes up the chimney just the same.

Notes & References
  1. The poems were collected and transcribed by Mike Camden.
  2. City of The Plains
    A History of Hastings
    M.B. Boyd
  3. Sergeant Hogan must have been very well known in Hastings. On p 141 of reference 2 there is an unreferenced cartoon and poem (apparently to the tune of Gilbert and Sutherland), the style of which is very much like Mike's:

    "How Hogan Cleaned the Town"

    On Consthabulary duty
    I'm a divil!
    It's me slogan
    When I appear
    The Fusilier
    Accelerates, and fades into
    The misty distance
    For indade,
    A very divil of a cop am I!

    Probably from about the turn of the century when Hastings is described as having a problem with drunkenness and larikinism.

  4. Mayors of Hastings:
    1899-04 WY Dennett
    1904-05 William Lane
    1905-06 WY Dennett
    1906-09 TJ Thomson
    1909-11 JA Miller
    1911-13 James Garnett
    1913-17 William Hart
    1917-19 H Ian Simpson
    1919-21 George Ebbett
    1921-22 William Hart
    1922-29 GA Maddison
    1929-33 GF Roach
    1933-41 GA Maddison

    MPs for Hawkes Bay:
    1905-11 Sir Will. Russell
    1911-14 AC Dillon
    1914-17 Robert McNab
    1917-19 Sir JG Findlay
    1919-22 HM Campbell
    1922-25 G MacKay
    1925-35 HM Campbell
    1935-49 EL Cullen