Verse > Anthologies > Alfred H. Miles, ed. > Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century
Alfred H. Miles, ed.  Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century.  1907.
Miscellaneous Poems.
I. England’s Dead
By Felicia Dorothea Hemans (1793–1835)
    SON of the Ocean Isle!
    Where sleep your mighty dead?
Show me what high and stately pile
    Is reared o’er Glory’s bed.
    Go, stranger! track the deep—        5
    Free, free the white sail spread!
    Wave may not foam, nor wild wind sweep,
Where rest not England’s dead.
    On Egypt’s burning plains,
    By the pyramid o’erswayed,        10
With fearful power the noonday reigns,
    And the palm-trees yield no shade;—
    But let the angry sun
    From heaven look fiercely red,
Unfelt by those whose task is done!—        15
    There slumber England’s dead.
    The hurricane hath might
    Along the Indian shore,
And far by Ganges’ banks at night
    Is heard the tiger’s roar;—        20
    But let the sound roll on!
    It hath no tone of dread
For those that from their toils are gone,—
    There slumber England’s dead.
    Loud rush the torrent-floods        25
    The Western wilds among,
And free, in green Columbia’s woods,
    The hunter’s bow is strung;—
    But let the floods rush on!
    Let the arrow’s flight be sped!        30
Why should they reck whose task is done?—
    There slumber England’s dead.
    The mountain-storms rise high
    In the snowy Pyrenees,
And toss the pine-boughs through the sky        35
    Like rose-leaves on the breeze;—
    But let the storm rage on!
    Let the fresh wreaths be shed!
For the Roncesvalles’ field is won,—
    There slumber England’s dead.        40
    On the frozen deep’s repose
    ’Tis a dark and dreadful hour,
When round the ship the ice-fields close,
    And the northern night-clouds lour;—
    But let the ice drift on!        45
    Let the cold-blue desert spread!
Their course with mast and flag is done,—
    Even there sleep England’s dead.
    The warlike of the isles,
    The men of field and wave!        50
Are not the rocks their funeral piles,
    The seas and shores their grave?
    Go, stranger! track the deep—
    Free, free the white sail spread!
Wave may not foam, nor wild wind sweep,        55
    Where rest not England’s dead.

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