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Yet though thy garden's green arcade
The marksman's fatal post was made,
Though on thy shatter'd beeches fell
The blended rage of shot and shell,
Though from thy blacken'd portals torn,
Their fall thy blighted fruit-trees mourn,
Has not such havoc bought a name
Immortal in the rolls of fame?
Yes - Agincourt may be forgot,
And Cressy be an unknown spot,
And Blenheim's name be new ;
But still in story and in song,
For many an age remember'd long,
Shall live the towers of Hougomont,
And Field of Waterloo.
Waterloo ?' he said, — Call it Hougomont, call it La Haye Sainte, call it Popelot, - any thing but Waterloo.'" — Pilgrimage to Waterloo.]
Stern tide of human Time! that know'st not rest,
But, sweeping from the cradle to the tomb,
Bear'st ever downward on thy dusky breast
Successive generations to their doom;
While thy capacious stream has equal room
bark where Pleasure's streamers sport, And for the prison-ship of guilt and gloom,
The fisher skiff, and barge that bears a court, Still wafting onward all to one dark silent port;
Stern tide of Time! through what mysterious change
Of hope and fear have our srail barks been driven!
For ne'er, before, vicissitude so strange
Was to one race of Adam's offspring given.
And sure such varied change of sea and heaven,
Such unexpected bursts of joy and woe,
Such fearful strife as that where we have striven,
Succeeding ages ne'er again shall know,
Until the awful term when Thou shalt cease to flow.
Well hast thou stood, my Country!— the brave figi
Hast well maintain'd through good report and ill;
In thy just cause and in thy native might,
And in Heaven's grace and justice constant still;
Whether the banded prowess, strength, and skill
Of half the world against thee stood array'd,
Or when, with better views and freer will,
Beside thee Europe's noblest drew the blade,
Each emulous in arms the Ocean Queen to aid.
Well art thou now repaid -- though slowly rose,
And struggled long with mists thy blaze of fame.
While like the dawn that in the orient glows
On the broad wave its earlier lustre came;
Then eastern Egypt saw the growing flame,
And Maida's myrtles gleam'd beneath its ray,
Where first the soldier, stung with generous shame,
Rivall'd the heroes of the wat'ry way,
And wash'd in foemen’s gore unjust reproach away.
Now, Island Empress, wave thy crest on high,
And bid the banner of thy Patron flow,
Gallant Saint George, the flower of Chivalry,
For thou hast faced, like him, a dragon foe,
And rescued innocence from overthrow,
And trampled down, like him, tyrannic might,
And to the gazing world mayst proudly show
The chosen emblem of thy sainted Knight,
Who quell'd devouring pride, and vindicated right.
Yet 'mid the confidence of just renown,
Renown dear-bought, but dearest thus acquired,
Write, Britain, write the moral lesson down:
'Tis not alone the heart with valour fired,
The discipline so dreaded and admired,
In many a field of bloody conquest known;
-Such may by fame be lured, by gold be hired
'Tis constancy in the good cause alone,
Best justifies the meed thy valiant sons have won.
END OF THE FIELD OF WATERLOO.