Our Eastern Treasure

Somewhere in cobwebb'd corners I can hear
A thin voice pipingly revived of late,
Which saith our India is a cumbrous weight,
An idle decoration bought too dear.
The wiser world contemns not gorgeous gear,
And knows that by a just and happy fate
The sense of greatness keeps a nation great,
Telling her when to fear not — when to fear!
It may be that if hands of greed could steal
From England's grasp the envied orient prize,
This tide of gold would flood her still, as now;
But were she the same England, made to feel
A brightness gone from out those starlike eyes,
A splendour from that constellated brow?
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