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Ionicus

by
 With failing feet and shoulders bowed 
Beneath the weight of happier days, 
He lagged among the heedless crowd, 
Or crept along suburban ways.
But still through all his heart was young, A courage, a pride, a rapture, sprung Of the strength and splendour of England's war.
From ill-requited toil he turned To ride with Picton and with Pack, Among his grammars inly burned To storm the Afghan mountain-track.
When midnight chimed, before Quebec He watched with Wolfe till he morning star; At noon he saw from Victory's deck The sweep and splendour of England's war.
Beyond the book his teaching sped, He left on whom he taught the trace Of kinship with the deathless dead, And faith in all the Island race.
He passed : his life a tangle seemed, His age from fame and power was far; But his heart was night to the end, and dreamed Of the sound and splendour of England's war.

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