Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, SONNET, by ROBERT SEYMOUR BRIDGES



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First Line: England will keep her dearest jewel bright
Last Line: She, seeing her face therein, shall not be ashamed
Alternate Author Name(s): Bridges, Robert+(2)
Subject(s): Theater - England - 20th Century


Spoken by Sir Johnston Forbes-Robertson at the opening of the Theatre of the
Royal Academy of Dramatic Art by H.R.H. the Prince of Wales, May 27, 1921

ENGLAND will keep her dearest jewel bright,
And see her sons like to their sires renown'd;
Whose Shakespeare is with deathless Homer crown'd,
Her freedom the world's hope throned in the height.
All gifts of spirit are of such airy flight
That if their fire be spent they fall to ground;
Their virtue must with newborn life abound,
And by young birth renew their old birthright.

We workers therefore in this troublous age
Would keep our beauty of language from misfeature,
Presenting manners noble, and mirth unblamed:
So Truth shall walk majestic on our stage,
And when we hold the mirror up to Nature,
She, seeing her face therein, shall not be ashamed





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