214 KIPLING'S SUSSEX
some eloquent lines on the Flint men from the poem:
" From the wattle folds on the hill slope Come the wavering maternal notes of the sheep, Anxious and troubled over the ways of their new-dropped lambs. Beyond all are the hills bare and strange in the evening
light, Furrowed with ridges dug by the Flint Men : Hills that have altered little since the Flint Men Made their great ditches and drank from their dew-ponds. A plough left in its furrow catches a gleam from the sky And speaks of man's toil for bread to the lonely slopes
above Where the blasted Witch tree shows against the sky line His fear of the lurking evil that dried his cows and spoilt
his butter— A fear that in vaster forms haunted Stonehenge, And is not utterly gone from the comfortable farmhouse fireside.
So do the Flint Men touch with the villagers they knew not,
And the Past loom over the Present.
So do the human lives gathered in the hollow of the village
Shelter from unknown things under its clustered roofs—
Roofs and walls, which humble as they are, have outlasted generations,
Have seen birth and death, joy and grief, and older wars."