Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, POST-RECESSIONAL, by GILBERT KEITH CHESTERTON



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POST-RECESSIONAL, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: God of your fathers, known of old
Last Line: For god forgives and men forget.
Alternate Author Name(s): Chesterton, G. K.
Subject(s): Kipling, Rudyard (1865-1936)


God of your fathers, known of old,
For patience with man's swaggering line,
He did not answer you when told
About you and your palm and pine,
Though you deployed your far-flung host
And boasted that you did not boast.

Though drunk with sight of power and blind,
Even as you bowed your head in awe,
You kicked up both your heels behind
At lesser breeds without the law;
Lest they forget, lest they forget,
That yours was the exclusive set.

We fancied heaven preferring much,
Your rowdiest song, your slangiest sentence,
Your honest banjo banged, to such
Very recessional repentance;
Now if your native land be dear,
Whisper (or shout) and we shall hear.

Cut down, our navies melt away.
From ode and war-song fades the fire,
We are a jolly sight to-day
Too near to Sidon and to Tyre
To make it sound so very nice
To offer ancient sacrifice.

Rise up and bid the trumpets blow
When it is gallant to be gay,
Tell the wide world it shall not know
Our face until we turn to bay.
Bless you, you shall be blameless yet,
For God forgives and men forget.





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