Today's Beautiful Gem: `What Makes a Nation Great?' by Alexander Blackburn.

"Not serried ranks with flags unfurled,
Not armoured ships that gird the world,
Not hoarded wealth nor busy mills,
Not cattle on a thousand hills,
Not sages wise, nor schools nor laws,
Not boasted deeds in freedom's cause--
All these may be, and yet the state
In the eye of God be far from great.

"That land is great which knows the Lord,
Whose songs are guided by His word;
Where justice rules 'twixt man and man,
Where love controls in art and plan;
Where, breathing in his native air,
Each soul finds joy in praise and prayer--
Thus may our country, good and great,
Be God's delight-- man's best estate."

Om s'aantih: Peace! - J. K. Mohana Rao