Post more comments
Want a gift card for being active Forum member? Post comments and win $25 gift card every week.
Rules:
PoemHunter.com will be giving away Amazon.com gift cards (worth $75 in total) every week to first three members ($25 each) who participate most in our forum discussions. You just have to post comments on forum pages, poet pages or poem pages anywhere inside PoemHunter.com
Comments posted needs to be in different pages. Posting more than 1 comment on the same page will only be counted once.
Members can not post comments without being logged in.
PoemHunter.com has the right to cancel or edit this contest.
PoemHunter.com has a right to disqualify or ban member(s) without providing any type of reason, belief or proof in regards to any type of illegal activity or fraud.

Martin Farquhar Tupper

(July 17, 1810 - November 1889 / London)

A Dozen Ballads About White Slavery. IV. The British Slave's Reply To A Political Economist


So! you preach me self-reliance,
Emigration,- rights of man?
So! you bid me breathe defiance
As a freeborn Briton can?
Break the fetter, burst the shackle,
Let the despot find me still
Loose from all constraining tackle,
Stout of heart, and strong of will?-

Tell the mouse to bell the mouser,
Bid the harnessed jade kick out,
Be the lion's mean arouser
Till his cage he raves about!
Say to Lethargy, be stirring,
Counsel health to fever's cheek,
Preach cold ethics to the erring,
Teach gymnastics to the weak!

O, good sir! your weighty reason
Falls like feathers on a fool;
Want has no such leisure season
No such chance to go to school:
Bitter circumstance has bound me,
Everyway its serf and slave,
And for these free hands has found me
Fetters even to the grave!

You have wit, and time to whet it,
Feeling, knowledge, station, might,
I - my
bread
it's hard to get it,
All beyond is out of sight,
Out of hope, and out of heeding;
Think you that my stinted soul
Can, like yours, on thoughts be feeding,
Or be kindled like a coal?

What the parson weekly preaches,
Pretty seldom understood,
What the book of Nature teaches,
That's
my
sum of true and good:
Gentlefolks have nobler chances
Prizes all, as things of course;
But the poor man's Circumstances
Bind him down a slave perforce!

Emigrate? - to where I know not,-
Whilst I cannot break my chain;
Rights of man? - my Rights, they show not,-
And my Wrongs are shown in vain!
And, for what you call 'defiance,'
If one act, or word, or look
Even hinted 'Self-reliance,'
-I'm struck off the Bailiff's book!

Submitted: Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (A Dozen Ballads About White Slavery. IV. The British Slave's Reply To A Political Economist by Martin Farquhar Tupper )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

Top Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
    Maya Angelou
  9. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  10. Invictus
    William Ernest Henley

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. Hard words from an open page..., PARTHA SARATHI PAUL
  2. Who Put On The News?, John Garth Raubenheimer
  3. In servitude and sea, Elijah o.b Zoff
  4. mermaid, laxami Cards
  5. If, dhia abada
  6. PRAYER OF SALVATION, Colin Ian Jeffery
  7. Sweet Child, Galina Sherkov
  8. Hurt, Galina Sherkov
  9. Neonates in Buckets, Richard Thripp
  10. Cold, Galina Sherkov

Poem of the Day

poet George Gordon Byron

I Speak Not, I Trace...
by George Gordon Byron

I speak not, I trace not, I breathe not thy name;
There is grief in the sound, there is guilt in the fame;
But the tear that now burns on my cheek may impart
...... Read complete »

   
[Hata Bildir]