Show-Day At Battle Abbey, 1876


A garden here—May breath and bloom of spring—
The cuckoo yonder from an English elm
Crying ‘with my false egg I overwhelm
The native nest:’ and fancy hears the ring
Of harness, and that deathful arrow sing,
And Saxon battleaxe clang on Norman helm.
Here rose the dragon-banner of our realm:
Here fought, here fell, our Norman-slander’d king.
O Garden blossoming out of English blood!
O strange hate-healer Time! We stroll and stare
Where might made right eight hundred years ago;
Might, right? ay good, so all things make for good-
But he and he, if soul be soul, are where
Each stands full face with all he did below.


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