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Alfred Noyes

A Forest Song

Who would be a king

That can sit in the sun and sing?

Nay, I have a kingdom of mine own.

A fallen oak-tree is my throne.

Then, pluck the strings, and tell me true

If Cæsar in his glory knew

The worlds he lost in sun and dew.

Who would be a queen

That sees what my love hath seen?—

The blood of little children shed

To make one royal ruby red!

Then tell me, music, why the great

For quarreling trumpets abdicate

This quick, this absolute estate.

Nay, who would sing in heaven,

Among the choral Seven

That hears—as Love and I have heard,

The whole sky listening to one bird?

And where's the ruby, tell me where,

Whose crimsons for one breath compare

With this wild rose that all may share?