Arms And The Man. - The Ravages Of War.

A poem by James Barron Hope

This on the water: on the land a scene
Whose Epic scope is far beyond my power,
For on this spot a People's fate hath been
Decided in an hour.

Long was the conflict waged through weary years
Counted from when the sturdy farmers fell:
Hopes crucified, red trenches, bitter tears,
Made Man another hell!

See pallid women girt in woe and weeds!
See little children gaunt for lack of food!
Behold the catalogue of War's black deeds
Where evil stands for good!

See slaughtered cattle, never more to roam,
Rot in the fields, while chimneys tall and bare
Tell in dumb pathos how some quiet home
Lit up the midnight air!

See that burnt crop, yon choked-up sylvan well,
This yeoman slain ye corven in the sun!
My GOD! shreds of a woman's dress to tell
Why murder there was done!

Such things as these gave edge to all the blows
Our fathers struck on this historic sod,
Feet, hands, and faces turned toward their foes -
Their valiant hearts to GOD.

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