Patriotism

There was a time when it was counted high
To be a patriot--whether by the zeal
Of peaceful labour for the country's weal,
Or by the courage in her cause to die:

FOR KING AND COUNTRY was a rallying cry
That turned men's hearts to fire, their nerves to steel;
Not to unheeding ears did it appeal,
A pulpit formula, a platform lie.

Only a fool will wantonly desire
That war should come, outpouring blood and fire,
And bringing grief and hunger in her train.
And yet, if there be found no other way,
God send us war, and with it send the day
When love of country shall be real again!

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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