Cities and Thrones and Powers
Stand in Time's eye, Almost as long as flowers, Which daily die: But, as new buds put forth To glad new men, Out of the spent and unconsidered Earth The Cities rise again. This season's Daffodil, She never hears What change, what chance, what chill, Cut down last year's; But with bold countenance, And knowledge small, Esteems her seven days' continuance, To be perpetual. So Time that is o'er-kind To all that be, Ordains us e'en as blind, As bold as she: That in our very death, And burial sure, Shadow to shadow, well persuaded, saith, "See how our works endure!"
There is an explanatory note:
The date in the heading – A.D. 406 – is significant.. It is the year the Roman legions were withdrawn and Britain was left on her own to face the threat of Anglo-Saxon invasion. Though spoken by a Roman serving in Britain, there are obvious references to the situation in England 1500 years later.