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Poem by Francis Turner Palgrave


Elizabeth at Tilbury


          Autumn, 1588

LET them come, come never so proudly
  Oer the green waves in tall array;
Silver clarions menacing loudly,
  All the Spains on their pennons gay;
High on deck of their gilded galleys
  Our light sailers they scorn below:
We will scatter them, plague and shatter them,
  Till their flag hauls down to the foe!
            For our oath we swear
            By the name we bear
By Englands Queen and England free and fair,
Hers ever and hers still, come life, come death:
            God save Elizabeth!

Sidonia, Recalde, and Leyva
  Watch from their bulwarks in swarthy scorn:
Lords and princes by Philips favor:
  We by birthright are noble born!
Freemen born of the blood of freemen,
  Sons of Cressy and Flodden are we:
We shall sunder them, fire and plunder them,
  English boats on the English sea!
            And our oath we swear
            By the name we bear,
By Englands Queen and England free and fair,
Hers ever and hers still, come life, come death:
            God save Elizabeth!

Drake and Frobisher, Hawkins and Howard,
  Raleigh, Cavendish, Cecil and Brooke,
Hang like wasps by the flagships towered,
  Sting their way through the thrice-piled oak:
Let them range their seven-mile crescent,
  Giant galleons, canvas wide!
Ours will harry them, board and carry them,
  Plucking the plumes of the Spanish pride;
            For our oath we swear
            By the name we bear,
By Englands Queen, and England free and fair,
Hers ever and hers still, come life, come death:
            God save Elizabeth!

Has God risen in wrath and scattered,
  Have his tempests smote them in scorn?
Past the Orcades, dumb and tattered,
  Mong sea-beasts do they drift forlorn?
We were as lions hungry for battle;
  God has made our battle his own!
God has scattered them, sunk and shattered them:
  Give the glory to him alone!
            While our oath we swear
            By the name we bear,
By Englands Queen and England free and fair,
Hers ever and hers still, come life, come death:
            God save Elizabeth!



Francis Turner Palgrave


Francis Turner Palgrave's other poems:
  1. Mount Vernon
  2. Edith of England
  3. A Home in the Palace
  4. Alfred The Great
  5. Blenheim


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