Here you will find the Poem Mamba: (The Bright Eyed) An Aboriginal Reminiscence of poet George Gordon McCrae
Canto I. XXVIII. The day had fled, the moon arose, Night straight began with evening's close-- A night whose calm and silvery sheen Befitted well the wild yapeen.1 Within the circle of the camp Blazed the clear fire, while measured tramp Of dancing warriors shook the ground, To song and time-sticks' throbbing sound. There twice two hundred feet advanced, There twice a hundred malkas2 glanced Bright in the moon, that silvered o'er The arms that all those malkas bore. Wild the device, and strange the sign That stared in many a snowy line From beaming face and heaving breast, And limbs that seldom paused to rest; Whilst all the rib-like lines laid on, Made each man seem a skeleton. Nodded the feathers from the red And netted band that bound each head, And hoarsely rustling leaves of trees Shook round dark ankles in the breeze. The singers with their time-sticks rang The cadence of the song they sang; And every face and limb below, And tree above them, caught the glow That spread from camp-fire's rising blaze, Lighting the yapeen's wond'rous maze Of feet and ankles in the dance With fitful gleam or twinkling glance. XXIX Conspicuous 'mid the dancing crowd, Whose ranks alternate swayed and bowed, Shone Mamba, tricked with wild design, And symbol traced in waving line. No limbs more active wore the green At yon great Ghim-boboke3 yapeen; And no two arms more graceful there In circling motion cleft the air Than his--and his the eagle-eye Inspiring all the minstrelsy. The young and old in groups around Drank in the sight, the joy, the sound; And Mamba's form throughout the dance Attraced every wondering glance.