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Poem by Henry Newbolt
Among a race high-handed, strong of heart, Sea-rovers, conquerors, builders in the waste, He had his birth; a nature too complete, Eager and doubtful, no man's soldier sworn And no man's chosen captain; born to fail, A name without an echo: yet he too Within the cloister of his narrow days Fulfilled the ancestral rites, and kept alive The eternal fire; it may be, not in vain; For out of those who dropped a downward glance Upon the weakling huddled at his prayers, Perchance some looked beyond him, and then first Beheld the glory, and what shrine it filled, And to what Spirit sacred: or perchance Some heard him chanting, though but to himself, The old heroic names: and went their way: And hummed his music on the march to death.
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