Verse > Anthologies > James and Mary Ford, eds. > Every Day in the Year
James and Mary Ford, eds.  Every Day in the Year.  1902.
October 30
Nikolson’s Nek
By Charles Edward Russell (1860–1941)
Natal, Oct. 30, 1899

HO, ancient bully, beaten to your knees,
  Do you know her eyes that flame, her hands that smite?
  Whose wrathful face and wide smooth brows and white
And dented shield from countless fields like these
Gleamed fierce and fair among the rocks and trees        5
  On Concord road? Who through the weary night
  Burned, though beclouded, till from Yorktown’s height
She crowned a people with their liberties?
Yea, fear her! This is she in whose sure scrolls
  Is writ, blood-red, the record of your crime—        10
By what wrecked nations and what wretched souls,
  What tears, what hate, what groveling and grime
Your rising—and the very tide that rolls
  To hurl you headlong on the sands of Time!

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