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Alfred H. Miles, ed. The Sacred Poets of the Nineteenth Century. 1907.

By III. “All men are equal in their birth”

Harriet Martineau (1802–1876)

ALL men are equal in their birth,

Heirs of the earth and skies;

All men are equal when that earth

Fades from their dying eyes.

All wait alike on Him whose power

Upholds the life He gave;

The sage within his star-lit tower,

The savage in his cave.

God meets the throngs that pay their vows

In courts their hands have made;

And hears the worshipper who bows

Beneath the plantain shade.

’Tis man alone who difference sees,

And speaks of high and low,

And worships those and tramples these,

While the same path they go.

Oh, let man hasten to restore

To all their rights of love;

In power and wealth exult no more;

In wisdom lowly move.

Ye great! renounce your earth-born pride;

Ye low, your shame and fear:

Live as ye worship side by side;

Your brotherhood revere.