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ONE might believe that natural miseries
Had blasted France, and made of it a land
Unfit for Men; and that in one great Band
Her sons were bursting forth, to dwell at ease.
But 'tis a chosen soil, where sun and breeze
Shed gentle favours; rural works are there;
And ordinary business without care!

Spot rich in all things that can smooth and please!
How piteous then that there should be such dearth
Of knowledge; that whole myriads should unite
To work against themselves such fell despite :
Should come in phrensy and in drunken mirth,
Impatient to put out the only light

Of Liberty that yet remains on Earth!


THERE is a bondage worse, far worse, to bear
Than his who breathes, by roof, and floor, and wall,
Pent in, a Tyrant's solitary Thrall:

'Tis his who walks about in the open air,

One of a Nation who, henceforth, must wear

Their fetters in their Souls. For who could be,

Who, even the best, in such condition, free

From self-reproach, reproach which he must share
With Human nature? Never be it ours

To see the sun how brightly it will shine,
And know that noble Feelings, manly Powers,
Instead of gathering strength, must droop and pine,
And earth with all her pleasant fruits and flowers
Fade, and participate in Man's decline.

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THESE times touch monied Worldlings with dismay:
Even rich men, brave by nature, taint the air
With words of apprehension and despair:
While tens of thousands, thinking on the affray,
Men unto whom sufficient for the day
And minds not stinted or untilled are given,
Sound, healthy Children of the God of Heaven,
Are cheerful as the rising Sun in May.
What do we gather hence but firmer faith
That every gift of noble origin

Is breathed upon by Hope's perpetual breath;
That virtue and the faculties within

Are vital, and that riches are akin

To fear, to change, to cowardice, and death?


ENGLAND! the time is come when thou should'st wean Thy heart from its emasculating food;

The truth should now be better understood;

Old things have been unsettled; we have seen

Fair seed-time, better harvest might have been
But for thy trespasses; and, at this day,
If for Greece, Egypt, India, Africa,

Aught good were destined, Thou would'st step between.
England! all nations in this charge agree:

But worse, more ignorant in love and hate

Far, far more abject is thine Enemy:

Therefore the wise pray for thee, though the freight Of thy offences be a heavy weight:

Oh grief that Earth's best hopes rest all with Thee!

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WHEN, looking on the present face of things,
I see one Man, of Men the meanest too!
Raised up to sway the World, to do, undo,
With mighty Nations for his Underlings,
The great events with which old story rings
Seem vain and hollow; I find nothing great:
Nothing is left which I can venerate;

So that almost a doubt within me springs
Of Providence, such emptiness at length
Seems at the heart of all things.

But, great God!
I measure back the steps which I have trod;
And tremble, seeing whence proceeds the strength
Of such poor Instruments, with thoughts sublime
I tremble at the sorrow of the time.


OCTOBER, 1803.

VANGUARD of Liberty, ye Men of Kent,
Ye Children of a Soil that doth advance
Her haughty brow against the coast of France,
Now is the time to prove your hardiment!
To France be words of invitation sent!

They from their Fields can see the countenance
Of your fierce war, may ken the glittering lance,
And hear you shouting forth your brave intent.
Left single, in bold parley, Ye, of yore,
Did from the Norman win a gallant wreath;
Confirmed the charters that were yours before;
No parleying now! In Britain is one breath;
We all are with you now from Shore to Shore:
Ye Men of Kent, 'tis Victory or Death!


OCTOBER, 1803.

SHOUT, for a mighty Victory is won!

On British ground the Invaders are laid low;
The breath of Heaven has drifted them like snow,
And left them lying in the silent sun,

Never to rise again! the work is done.

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Come forth, ye Old Men, now in peaceful show
And greet your Sons! drums beat and trumpets blow!
Make merry, Wives! ye little Children, stun
Your Grandame's ears with pleasure of your noise!
Clap, Infants, clap your hands! Divine must be
That triumph, when the very worst, the pain,
And even the prospect of our Brethren slain,
Hath something in it which the heart enjoys:
In glory will they sleep and endless sanctity.

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ANOTHER year r! — another deadly blow!
Another mighty Empire overthrown!
And We are left, or shall be left, alone;
The last that dare to struggle with the Foe.
'Tis well! from this day forward we shall know
That in ourselves our safety must be sought;
That by our own right hands it must be wrought,
That we must stand unpropped, or be laid low.
O Dastard whom such foretaste doth not cheer!
We shall exult, if They who rule the land
Be Men who hold its many blessings dear,
Wise, upright, valiant; not a servile Band,
Who are to judge of danger which they fear,
And honour which they do not understand.



WHO rises on the banks of Seine,
And binds her temples with the civic wreath?
What joy to read the promise of her mien!
How sweet to rest her wide-spread wings beneath!
But they are ever playing,

And twinkling in the light,
And, if a breeze be straying,

That breeze she will invite ;

And stands on tiptoe, conscious she is fair,
And calls a look of love into her face,
And spreads her arms —as if the general air
Alone could satisfy her wide embrace.
Melt, Principalities, before her melt!

Her love ye hailed — her wrath have felt!

But She through many a change of form hath gone,
And stands amidst you now, an armèd Creature,
Whose panoply is not a thing put on,

But the live scales of a portentous nature;

That, having wrought its way from birth to birth, Stalks round-abhorred by Heaven, a terror to the Earth!

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