Tribute to Gladstone
Lift up your heads; in life, in death,
God knoweth his head was high;
Quit we the coward's broken breath,
Who watched a strong man die.
If ye must say "No more his peer
Cometh: the flag is furled,"
Stand not too near him; lest we hear
That slander on the world
The good green earth he loved and trod
Is still, with many a scar,
Writ in the chronicles of God
A giant-bearing star.
He fell: but Britain's banner swings
Above his sunken crown;
Black Death shall have his toil of kings
Before the cross goes down.
O young ones of a darker day,
In Art's wan colours clad,
Whose very love and hate are grey,
Whose very sin is sad,
Pass on: one agony long-drawn
Was merrier than your mirth;
When hand in hand came death and dawn
And spring was on the earth.