England's Brave Sons

A poem by Joseph Horatio Chant

The yeoman lays aside his soil-stained smock,
And from his herd selects a trusty steed,
And sallies forth to help in hour of need;
Nor dreads the battle's shock.

The artisan from mine, or shop, or store,
Responds at duty's call without delay,
Nor stops to ask, "What will my nation pay?"
It calls--what needs he more?

The man of law--the herald of the cross--
The painter, skilled--he of the healing art--
The man of trade--come each with loyal heart,
Nor calculates his loss.

But brave as these are those of noble birth;
Genteel in manner, but with athlete frames,
They do full honor to their ancient names,
And prove by deeds their worth.

Palatial homes have they and wealth untold;
Nor need to labor, and no cause for fret,
But deeds of noble sires they ne'er forget;
Deem honor more than gold.

Brave lads are these on whom we may rely.
They go uncalled, content the gaps to fill,
And in their places fall, if God so will,
For they fear not to die.

The whole Empire is loyal to the core.
From far-off East, brave Indians seek the fray,
And on French soil have clearly shown that they
Were true to flag they bore.

Their old-time leader greets his men once more,
Bestows his parting blessing ere his death,
And praised their valor with his final breath,
Then crossed to other shore.

Our own brave youth by thousands answer call,
And in our common cause enroll their names;
With cultured minds and well-developed frames
They stand like granite wall.

For truth and brotherhood all face the foe;
Themselves they cannot save, but others may.
But, live or die, they hope to win the day.
To sacrifice they go!

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