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I LÍKE the Belgian cleanliness and comfort,
The Belgian liberty of thought and action,
The ancient Belgian cities, full of churches
With pointed windows and long Gothic aisles :
And vocal steeples that pour every hour
Dówn from the clouds their lárklike melody;
I love too the soft Belgian languages,
Walloon and Flemish, and the Belgian song,
And Bélgium's pictures chiefly thine, Van Eyck!
Unéqualled colorist, and first who dipped
In oil the pencil. But I like not all,
Múch though I like in Belgium; I like not
Its hill-less, smooth, unvariegated landscape,
Where even the very rivers seem to languish;
Still less I like its parallel, straight-cut roads
Where séldom but to telescope-armed eye
Discérnible the further end or turning;
And leást of all I like him whóm Cologne,
Proúd of a little, fain would call her own,
Though foreign-born, him of the broad, slouched hat,
The painter who shades red and with red streaks
And bloody blotches daubs the sprawling limbs
Óf his fat Venuses and Medicis,
Susánnas, Ariadnes and Madonnas,
Álways except his sweetheart with the stráw hat,

For whose sake I'd forgive his sins though doubled But other lands invite me, farewell Belgium!

Thrice welcome, Holland! refuge, in old times,
Of persecuted virtue, wisdom, learning;
Mighty Rhine-delta, I admire thy ports
Full of tall másts, wayfarers of both oceans;
Thy cabinets replenished with the riches
Of eíther Ind; thy dikes, canals, and sluices,
And territory from the deep sea won
Bý thy hard toil and skill and perseverance;
Bút I like not thy smug, smooth-sháven faces,
Sleék, methodístic hair, and white cravats,
And swallowtailed black coats, and trowsers black;
Still less I like the odour of thy streets
Ére by kind winter frozen, and the far more
Than Jewish eagerness with which thou graspest
At every pound or penny fairly earned,
Ór it may bé unfairly so I turn
Southward my pilgrim step, and say "Farewell!”

Two Germanies there are, antipodistic
Each of the other, a Northern and a Southern:
Stúrdy the one, and stiffnecked and reserved,
Caútious, suspicious, economical, prudent,
Indústrious, indefatigable, patient,
Stúdious and meditative and with art's
And literature's most noble spoils enriched,
That raised, three hundred years ago, revolt's
Audácious standard against mother church
And from that day has lived and florished fair
Without the help of Pope, Bull, or Indulgence,
Ánd in its naked, shrineless temples worshipped
Its únsubstantial notion of a God.

South Germany, less thoughtful, and preferring
Eáse and known ways to toilsome innovation,
Clíngs to its fóresires' creed, and only closer
And clóser clings the more it 's shown to be
Nónsense downright, hypocrisy and imposture.
Bóth Germanies my diligent, plodding feet
From North to South from East to West have travelled,
From filthy, rích, commercial, sensual Hamburg
To the far Draúthal and the Ortelerspitz,
And from where in the Moldau's wave reflected
The minarets of Prague, to where broad Rhine,
Fresh from Helvétia's Alps and glaciers, washes
Básel's white walls and weak Erasmus' tomb,
And I have found the German, in the main,
A plain fair-dealer without second purpose
Ánd to his word true; seldom over-courteous,
And álways quite inquisitive enough
About your náme, your country, your religion,
Whence, whíther, what and why and where and when;
And tákе fair warning, reader! shouldst thou ever,
Smit with the love of that coy spinster, Knowledge,
Vénture upon a German tour pedestrian,
Outside the limits of still courteous Schwarzwald,
The watchdog all day long his iron chain
Clánks on each boor's inhospitable threshold,
And even the inn door in the country opens
Slówly and súllenly or not at all
To the beláted, tired and houseless stranger.

From Germany I turn into Tyról;
A kíndlier, friendlier land; where tired pedestrian
Though he arrive late has no growl to fear
Of súrly watchdog or more surly landlord,
But greeted with “Willkommen!” and the smile

Of búsy, gay, key-jingling Kellnerin,
Throws down his knapsack on Gast-Stube table,
And áfter short delay is helped to the best
Saúsage, stewed veál, and wine the inn affords;
Nor is this all; finds when he goes upstairs
His béd, though nothing wider, has in length
Gained on the measure of his German cribs
Some good three inches, cleaner far besides;
And better furnished, but for greater width14
Thán his cramp German crib's spare thirty inches
He must have patience till he leaves behind him
Not Germany alone but North Tyról, pie kitara
And figs, vines, peaches, pomegranates and olives
And brighter suns and warmer airs announce
The European Eden, South Tyról.

From Vál Ampezzo and the belfry Glockner
And where in crystal vase is still preserved
The drop of the holy blood, I take my way
With the descending Drave into Carinthia's
East-trending valley-land flanked North and South
By mány a snow-clad Alp and ruined castle,
And sown by many a diligent peasant's hand
With mélons, maize, hemp, bere, oats, beans and barley.
I rúbbed mine eyes and wondered was 't a dream
When I behéld once more the female face
Óval and seemly, such as I'd been used
To admire in England, Scotland and dear Ireland,
And hád in vain sought through all sprawling-mouthed,
Broad, prominent cheekboned, cat-eyed Germany,
But hándsome though they be, Carinthia's maids
Detaín not lóng my faithless, wandering steps,
And on the banks of Téssin or old Tyber
Or stretched at ease upon the sunny slopes

O’erhanging Spezzia's palms and placid bay,
Behold me wooing soon a lovelier beauty.

I like thee, Italy, and I like thee not;
Thoú that a thousand years thine iron sceptre
Laid'st heávy on the neck of human kind
From western Tagus to far eastern Ganges,
And from the Picts' wall to the burning Line,
Thine hour of retribution 's come at last
And crushed beneath the tyrant's heel thou liest
Wríthing unpitied, not again to rise.
First waned thy private morals, then thy public;
Thy singleness and honesty of purpose,
Thy válor, heroism, selfdenial;
And though, of life tenacious, thy religion,
Clád in a different mantle and with features
Adjústed in the mirror of the times,
Sits in her ancient seat and fain would thence
Rúle as of old the world and act the God,
A tíme is coming when even Róme's religion
Must túmble down and perish like Rome's State,
Or dón another mantle, other features,
And spreading out with one hand a new forged
And lýing patent, tear down with the other
From the flagstaff the cross, and round a cone,
Triángle, square, trapezoid or circle,
Rálly new hósts of wonderworkers, martyrs,
Voices and signs and omens and believers.
Such shadowy prospect, far the field outlying
Óf the myopic vision of the vulgar,
Ópens before my strained eye in the dim
But hoúrly clear and clearer growing future,
And intermediate lying a vast plain
Cóvered with camps and bivouacs and battles

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