Verse > William Wordsworth > Complete Poetical Works
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ECCLESIASTICAL SONNETS

IN SERIES, 1821-22.

XXVII. HIS DESCENDANTS

          WHEN thy great soul was freed from mortal chains,
          Darling of England! many a bitter shower
          Fell on thy tomb; but emulative power
          Flowed in thy line through undegenerate veins.
          The Race of Alfred covet glorious pains
          When dangers threaten, dangers ever new!
          Black tempests bursting, blacker still in view!
          But manly sovereignty its hold retains;
          The root sincere, the branches bold to strive
          With the fierce tempest, while, within the round            10
          Of their protection, gentle virtues thrive;
          As oft, 'mid some green plot of open ground,
          Wide as the oak extends its dewy gloom,
          The fostered hyacinths spread their purple bloom.


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