The Queen’s Last Ride
(Written on the day of Queen Victoria’s funeral) The Queen is taking a drive to-day, They have hung with purple the carriage-way, They have dressed with purple the royal track Where the Queen goes forth and never comes back. Let no man labour as she goes by On her last appearance to mortal eye: With heads uncovered let all men wait For the Queen to pass, in her regal state. Army and Navy shall lead the way For that wonderful coach of the Queen’s to-day. Kings and Princes and Lords of the land Shall ride behind her, a humble band; And over the city and over the world Shall the Flags of all Nations be half-mast-furled, For the silent lady of royal birth Who is riding away from the Courts of earth, Riding away from the world’s unrest To a mystical goal, on a secret quest. Though in royal splendour she drives through town, Her robes are simple, she wears no crown: And yet she wears one, for, widowed no more, She is crowned with the love that has gone before, And crowned with the love she has left behind In the hidden depths of each mourner’s mind. Bow low your heads-lift your hearts on high- The Queen in silence is driving by!
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