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Francis Turner Palgrave

The Golden Land

O SWEET September in the valley
Carved through the green hills, sheer and straight,
Where the tall trees crowd round and sally
Down the slope sides, with stately gait
And sylvan dance: and in the hollow
Silver voices ripple and cry
Follow, O follow!

Follow, O follow!-and we follow
Where the white cottages star the slope,
And the white smoke winds o'er the hollow,
And the blythe air is quick with hope;
Till the Sun whispers, O remember!
You have but thirty days to run,
O sweet September!

-O sweet September, where the valley
Leans out wider and sunny and full,
And the red cliffs dip their feet and dally
With the green billows, green and cool;

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Death In The Forest

August 2: 1100

Where the greenwood is greenest
At gloaming of day,
Where the twelve-antler'd stag
Faces boldest at bay;
Where the solitude deepens,
Till almost you hear
The blood-beat of the heart
As the quarry slips near;
His comrades outridden
With scorn in the race,
The Red King is hallooing
His bounds to the chase.

What though the Wild Hunt
Like a whirlwind of hell
Yestereve ran the forest,
With baying and yell:--
In his cups the Red heathen

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Crecy

August 26: 1346

At Crecy by Somme in Ponthieu
High up on a windy hill
A mill stands out like a tower;
King Edward stands on the mill.
The plain is seething below
As Vesuvius seethes with flame,
But O! not with fire, but gore,
Earth incarnadined o'er,
Crimson with shame and with fame!--
To the King run the messengers, crying
'Thy Son is hard-press'd to the dying!'
--'Let alone: for to-day will be written in story
To the great world's end, and for ever:
So let the boy have the glory.'

Erin and Gwalia there
With England are one against France;
Outfacing the oriflamme red

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A Ballad Of Evesham

August 4: 1265

Earl Simon on the Abbey tower
In summer sunshine stood,
While helm and lance o'er Greenhill heights
Come glinting through the wood.
'My son!' he cried, 'I know his flag
Amongst a thousand glancing':--
Fond father! no!--'tis Edward stern
In royal strength advancing.

The Prince fell on him like a hawk
At Al'ster yester-eve,
And flaunts his captured banner now
And flaunts but to deceive:--
--Look round! for Mortimer is by,
And guards the rearward river:--
The hour that parted sire and son
Has parted them for ever!

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The Captive Child

September 8: 1650

Child in girlhood's early grace,
Pale white rose of royal race,
Flower of France, and England's flower,
What dost here at twilight hour
Captive bird in castle-hold,
Picture-fair and calm and cold,
Cold and still as marble stone
In gray Carisbrook alone?
--Fold thy limbs and take thy rest,
Nestling of the silent nest!

Ah fair girl! So still and meek,
One wan hand beneath her cheek,
One on the holy texts that tell
Of God's love ineffable;--
Last dear gift her father gave
When, before to-morrow's grave,
By no unmanly grief unmann'd,

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After Cawnpore

June: 1857

Fourteen, all told, no more,
Pack'd close within the door
Of that old idol-shrine:
And at them, as they stand,
And from that English band,
The leaden shower went out, and Death proclaim'd them
_Mine_!
Fourteen against an army; they, no more,
Had 'scaped Cawnpore.

With each quick volley-flash
The bullets ping and plash:
Yet, though the tropic noon
With furnace-fury broke
The sulphur-curling smoke,
Scarr'd, sear'd, thirst-silenced, hunger-faint, they stood:
And soon
A dusky wall,--death sheltering life,--uprose

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A Dorset Idyl

_HARCOMBE NEAR LYME_

September: 1878

Before me with one happy heave
Of golden green the hillside curves,
Where slowly, smoothly, rounding swerves
The shadow of each perfect tree,
By slanting shafts of eve
Flame-fringed and bathed in pale transparency.

And that long ridge that crowns the hill
Stands fir-dark 'gainst the falling rays;
Above, a waft of pearly haze
Lies on the sapphire field of air,
So radiant and so still
As though a star-cloud took its station there.

Up wold and wild the valley goes,
'Mid heath and mounded slopes of oak,

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