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- The Englishman and Other Poems - 2/12 -


Many hide behind the curtain With their faces hid from sight.

In the banquet hall of Progress All must gather soon or late, And the patient Host will wait.

If to-day, or if to-morrow, If in gladness, or in woe, If with pleasure, or with sorrow, All must answer, all must go. They must go with unveiled faces, Clothed in virtue and in pride. For the Host has set their places, And He will not he denied.

CORONATION POEM AND PRAYER

The world has crowned a thousand kings: But destiny has kept Her weightiest hour of kingly power To offer England's son. The rising bell of Progress rings; And Truths which long have slept, Like prophets strange, predicting change, Before Time's chariot run.

The greatest Empire of the Earth. Old England proudly stands. Like arteries her Colonies Reach out from sea to sea. She clasps all races in her girth; Her gaze the world commands; And far and wide where strong ships ride, The British Flag floats free.

Oh, never since the stars began Their round of Cosmic law, And souls evolved in ways unsolved, And kingdoms reached their prime Has Destiny held out to Man A gift so full of awe, As England's crown which she hands down In this stupendous time.

This is a crucial hour, when Fate Tries Monarchs as by fire. All rulers must be more than just - Men starve on bread alone. Old England's sense of RIGHT is great: But now let her aspire To feel more love, and build thereof An everlasting Throne.

The dreaming East, awake at last, Is asking 'when' and 'why'; Wait not too long nor answer wrong, Nor in too stern a voice. Let England profit by her past, And with her wise reply Rouse hearts, within her foster kin To hope, and to rejoice.

True wealth dwells not in things we own, But in our USE of things. Who would command a conquered land Must conquer first its heart. Such might as Man has never known, And power undreamed by kings, And boundless strength would come at length To one who used that art.

For now has dawned the People's day: A day of great unrest. Nor king nor creed can still man's need Of time and space to grow. All lands must shape a wider way, For this eternal quest; And Leisure yield a larger field Where work-worn feet may go.

The Universe is all a-thrill With changes imminent. The World in faith, with bated breath, Holds free the Leader's place. And wise is he whose heart and will At one with Time's intent, Shall open wide doors long denied To MOTHERS of the race.

On this round globe, oh, when and where Were fitter time and scene For Woman's soul to reach its goal Than NOW in England's realm. Was not the crown its King will wear Made glorious by its Queen? And who steered straight its ship of State? VICTORIA AT THE HELM!

Kings have been kings by accident, By favour and by force, But right of birth and moral worth, And Empires rich and broad For England's King to-day are blent Like rivers on one course. But, ah! the light falls searching white Down from the Throne of God.

Lord of the Earth and heavenly-spheres, Creator of all things, Thou who hast wrought great worlds from naught, Give strength to England's son. Give courage to dispel those fears That come to even kings, And for his creed give Love's full mead; Amen. Thy Will be done.

TWO VOICES

VIRTUE

O wanton one, O wicked one, how was it that you came, Down from the paths of purity, to walk the streets of shame? And wherefore was that precious wealth, God gave to you in trust, Flung broadcast for the feet of men to trample in the dust?

VICE

O prudent one, O spotless one, now listen well to me. The ways that led to where I tread these paths of sin, were three: And God, and good folks, all combined to make them fair to see.

VIRTUE

O wicked one, blasphemous one, now how could that thing be?

VICE

The first was Nature's lovely road, whereon my life was hurled. I felt the stirring in my blood, which permeates the world. I thrilled like willows in the spring, when sap begins to flow, It was young passion in my veins, but how was I to know?

The second was the silent road, where modest mothers dwell, And hide from eager, curious minds, the truth they ought to tell. That misnamed road called 'Innocence' should bear the sign 'to Hell.' With song and dance in ignorance I walked that road and fell.

VIRTUE

O fallen one, unhappy one, but why not rise and go Back to the ways you left behind, and leave your sins below, Nor linger in this sink of sin, since now you see, and know.

VICE

The third road was the fair high way, trod by the good and great. I cried aloud to that vast crowd, and told my hapless fate. They hurried all through door and wall and shut Convention's gate. I beat it with my bleeding hands: they must have heard me knock. They must have heard wild sob and word, yet no one turned the lock.

Oh, it is very desolate, on Virtue's path to stand, And see the good folks flocking by, withholding look and hand.

And so with hungry heart and soul, and weary brain and feet, I left that highway whence you came, and sought the sinful street.

O prudent one, O spotless one, when good folks speak of me, Go, tell them of the roads I came; the road ways fair, and three.

A BALLADE OF THE UNBORN DEAD

They walked the valley of the dead; Lit by a weird half light; No sound they made, no word they said; And they were pale with fright. Then suddenly from unseen places came Loud laughter, that was like a whip of flame.

They looked, and saw, beyond, above, A land where wronged souls wait; (Those spirits called to earth by love, And driven back by hate). And each one stood in anguish dumb and wild, As she beheld the phantom of her child.

Yea, saw the soul her wish had hurled


The Englishman and Other Poems - 2/12

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