Alfred Tennyson


Poem by Alfred Tennyson

 Reprinted without alteration in 1872, except the removal of italics in "now" among the 'Early Sonnets'.

How long, O God, shall men be ridden down,
And trampled under by the last and least
Of men? The heart of Poland hath not ceased
To quiver, tho' her sacred blood doth drown
The fields; and out of every smouldering town
Cries to Thee, lest brute Power be increased,
Till that o'ergrown Barbarian in the East
Transgress his ample bound to some new crown:--
Cries to thee, "Lord, how long shall these things be?
How long this icyhearted Muscovite
Oppress the region?" Us, O Just and Good,
Forgive, who smiled when she was torn in three;
Us, who stand now, when we should aid the right--
A matter to be wept with tears of blood!