As in her days
of power and state,
The great church stands, uplifting high
Her lantern - long the guiding eye
Of commerce - Surely they were great
Who could so build, and, day by day,
From sheltered homes could valiantly
Go forth to meet so wild a sea
As that which booms beyond the bay.
Those days are gone. There sound no more
The capstan song, the welcoming hails,
As some stout trader, fraught with bales
From Eastland marts, draws near the shore.
For not to Anglian ports today
Turns England with her swollen needs
They perished, but they sowed the seeds
Of empire ere they passed away.
Not all has gone; the marsh and the lea
Still the migrating myriads flock,
To preen their plumes, and ease the shock
Of their long battling o'er the sea.
Not all is lost for Beauty flies
From hearts that keep no place for her,
And with the wild sea-lavender
Builds here a home for outraged eyes,
That late have looked where, seamed and scarred,
Lies what men reverenced once. May all
Who hear the bells of Blakeney call,
Against a despoiling guard.