Verse > Rudyard Kipling > Verse: 1885–1918
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Rudyard Kipling (1865–1936).  Verse: 1885–1918.  1922.
 
Sir Richard’s Song
 
(A.D. 1066)

I FOLLOWED my Duke ere I was a lover,
  To take from England fief and fee;
But now this game is the other way over—
  But now England hath taken me!
 
I had my horse, my shield and banner,        5
  And a boy’s heart, so whole and free;
But now I sing in another manner—
  But now England hath taken me!
 
As for my Father in his tower,
  Asking news of my ship at sea,        10
He will remember his own hour—
  Tell him England hath taken me!
 
As for my Mother in her bower,
  That rules my Father so cunningly,
She will remember a maiden’s power—        15
  Tell her England hath taken me!
 
As for my Brother in Rouen City,
  A nimble and naughty page is he,
But he will come to suffer and pity—
  Tell him England hath taken me!        20
 
As for my little Sister waiting
  In the pleasant orchards of Normandie,
Tell her youth is the time for mating—
  Tell her England hath taken me!
 
As for my comrades in camp and highway,        25
  That lift their eyebrows scornfully,
Tell them their way is not my way—
  Tell them England hath taken me!
 
Kings and Princes and Barons famèd,
  Knights and Captains in your degree;        30
Hear me a little before I am blamèd—
  Seeing England hath taken me!
 
Howso great man’s strength be reckoned,
  There are two things he cannot flee.
Love is the first, and Death is the second—        35
  And Love in England hath taken me!
 
 
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