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The Rising of the Court by Henry Lawson
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The Rising of the Court, by Henry Lawson

Note: Only the prose stories are reproduced here, not the poetry.


The Rising of the Court


Oh, then tell us, Sings and Judges, where our meeting is to be,
when the laws of men are nothing, and our spirits all are free
when the laws of men are nothing, and no wealth can hold the fort,
There'll be thirst for mighty brewers at the Rising of the Court.


The same dingy court room, deep and dim, like a well, with the clock
high up on the wall, and the doors low down in it; with the bench,
which, with some gilding, might be likened to a gingerbread imitation
of a throne; the royal arms above it and the little witness box to one
side, where so many honest poor people are bullied, insulted and
laughed at by third-rate blackguardly little "lawyers," and so many
pitiful, pathetic and noble lies are told by pitiful sinners and
disreputable heroes for a little liberty for a lost self, or for the
sake of a friend--of a "pal" or a "cobber." The same overworked
and underpaid magistrate trying to keep his attention fixed on the
same old miserable scene before him; as a weary, overworked and
underpaid journalist or author strives to keep his attention fixed on
his proofs. The same row of big, strong, healthy, good-natured
policemen trying not to grin at times; and the police-court solicitors
("the place stinks with 'em," a sergeant told me) wrangling over
some miserable case for a crust, and the "reporters," shabby some of