Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
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Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
 
The King
By Mary Elizabeth Coleridge (1861–1907)
 
IT was but the lightest word of the King,
  When he was neither merry nor sad;
It was but a very little thing,
  Yet it made his servant glad.
 
He gave a look as it befell,        5
  Between a smile and a smother’d sigh.
Whether he meant it, who can tell?
  But the man went out to die.
 
 
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