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English Poetry II: From Collins to Fitzgerald.
The Harvard Classics. 1909–14.

William Wordsworth

406. When I Have Borne

WHEN I have borne in memory what has tamed

Great nations; how ennobling thoughts depart

When men change swords for ledgers, and desert

The student’s bower for gold,—some fears unnamed

I had, my Country!—am I to be blamed?

Now, when I think of thee, and what thou art,

Verily, in the bottom of my heart

Of those unfilial fears I am ashamed.

For dearly must we prize thee; we who find

In thee a bulwark for the cause of men;

And I by my affection was beguiled:

What wonder if a Poet now and then,

Among the many movements of his mind,

Felt for thee as a lover or a child!