Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. VIII. National Spirit
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Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume VIII. National Spirit.  1904.
 
I. Patriotism
Hands all Round
Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809–1892)
 
    FIRST drink a health, this solemn night,
      A health to England, every guest:
  That man ’s the best cosmopolite
      Who loves his native country best.
    May Freedom’s oak for ever live        5
      With stronger life from day to day:
    That man ’s the best Conservative
      Who lops the moulded branch away.
          Hands all round!
      God the tyrant’s hope confound!        10
To this great cause of Freedom drink, my friends,
And the great name of England, round and round.
 
    A health to Europe’s honest men!
      Heaven guard them from her tyrants’ jails!
    From wronged Poerio’s noisome den,        15
      From iron limbs and tortured nails!
    We curse the crimes of southern kings,
      The Russian whips and Austrian rods:
    We likewise have our evil things,—
      Too much we make our ledgers, gods.        20
          Yet hands all round!
      God the tyrant’s cause confound!
To Europe’s better health we drink, my friends,
And the great name of England, round and round!
 
    What health to France, if France be she,        25
      Whom martial progress only charms?
    Yet tell her—better to be free
      Than vanquish all the world in arms.
    Her frantic city’s flashing heats
      But fire, to blast the hopes of men.        30
    Why change the titles of your streets?
      You fools, you ’ll want them all again.
          Hands all round!
      God the tyrant’s cause confound!
To France, the wiser France, we drink, my friends,        35
And the great name of England, round and round.
 
    Gigantic daughter of the West,
      We drink to thee across the flood!
    We know thee and we love thee best;
      For art thou not of British blood?        40
    Should war’s mad blast again be blown,
      Permit not thou the tyrant powers
    To fight thy mother here alone,
      But let thy broadsides roar with ours.
          Hands all round!        45
      God the tyrant’s cause confound!
To our great kinsman of the West, my friends,
And the great name of England, round and round.
 
    Oh rise, our strong Atlantic sons,
      When war against our freedom springs!        50
    Oh, speak to Europe through your guns!
      They can be understood by kings.
    You must not mix our Queen with those
      That wish to keep their people fools:
    Our freedom’s foemen are her foes;        55
      She comprehends the race she rules.
          Hands all round!
      God the tyrant’s cause confound!
To our great kinsman in the West, my friends,
And the great cause of Freedom, round and round.        60
 
 
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