Ella Wheeler Wilcox

In England

In England, there are wrongs no doubt,
    Which should be righted; so men say,
Who seek to weed earth's garden out,
    And give the roses right of way;
Yes, right of way, to fruit and rose,
Where now but poison ivy grows.

In England, there is wide unrest,
    They tell me who should know; and yet
I saw but hedges, gayly dressed,
    And eyes where love and kindness met;
Yes, love and kindness, met and made
Soft sunshine even in the shade.

In England, there are haunting things
    Which follow one to other lands;
Like some pervading scent that clings
    To laces touched by vanished hands;
Yes, touched by vanished hands, which made
A fragrance that defies the grave.

In England, centuries of art
    Give common things a mellow tone;
And wake old memories in the heart
    Of other lives the soul has known;
Yes, other lives in some past age
Start forth from canvas, and from page.

In England, there are simple joys,
    The modern world has left all sweet;
In London's heart, are nooks where noise
    Has entered but with slippered feet;
Yes, entered softly.  Friend, believe,
To part from England is to grieve.

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