On English soil waits wearily
The next strange page of history,
Which may be turned with bayonet,
Whose pictures are with red blood wet,
Thinking, poor boy! of struggling France;
When, lo! an idle lifted glance
Sees strangers, all in convent guise,
Pass doubtingly before his eyes.
No sunshine now. Through shadow pale,
A fugitive in hood and veil
Asks for the prince. There is a cry,
A sudden lifting of the eye,
Then folded arms and smothered speech
One lesson, old as Calv'ry, teach:
Though empires die and kingdoms fall,
Sweet mother-love outlives them all.
No crown lies on her folded hair,
But silver threads are shining there,
While merry birds sing soft and low
The song they sang in Fontainebleau.