The Great War

from Songs & Sonnets for England in War Time, an electronic edition

To the King of the Belgians

Multitudes upon multitudes they throng

And thicken: who shall number their array?

They bid the peoples tremble and obey:

Their faces are set forward, all for wrong.

They trample on the covenant and are strong

And terrible. Who shall dare to say them nay?

How shall a little nation bar the way

Where that resistless host is borne along?

You never thought, O! gallant King, to bow

To overmastering force and stand aside.

Safe and secure you might have reigned. But now

Your Belgium is transfigured, glorified,

The friend of France and England, who avow

An Equal here, and thank the men who died.

Times, August 14, 1914