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William Wordsworth
Complete Poetical Works

LINES ON THE EXPECTED INVASION, 1803

COME ye--who, if (which Heaven avert!) the Land
Were with herself at strife, would take your stand,
Like gallant Falkland, by the Monarch's side,
And, like Montrose, make Loyalty your pride--
Come ye--who, not less zealous, might display
Banners at enmity with regal sway,
And, like the Pyms and Miltons of that day,
Think that a State would live in sounder health
If Kingship bowed its head to Commonwealth--
Ye too--whom no discreditable fear
Would keep, perhaps with many a fruitless tear,
Uncertain what to choose and how to steer--
And ye--who might mistake for sober sense
And wise reserve the plea of indolence--
Come ye--whate'er your creed--O waken all,
Whate'er your temper, at your Country's call;
Resolving (this a free-born Nation can)
To have one Soul, and perish to a man,
Or save this honoured Land from every Lord
But British reason and the British sword.