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Patriotic pieces from the Great War/Peace with a Sword

PEACE WITH A SWORD

By permission of the author

Peace! How we love her and the good she brings
On broad, benignant wings!
And we have clung to her, how close and long,
While she has made us strong!
Now we must guard her lest her power cease,
And in the harried world be no more peace.
Even with a sword,
Help us, O Lord!


For us no patient peace, the weary goal
Of a war-sickened soul;
No peace that battens on misfortune's pain,
Swollen with selfish gain,
Bending slack knees before a calf of gold,
With nerveless fingers impotent to hold
The freeman's sword.
Not this, O Lord!


No peace bought for us by the martyr dead
Of countries reeking red;
No peace flung to us from a tyrant's hand,
Sop to a servile land.
Our Peace the State's strong arm holds high and free,
"The placid peace she seeks in liberty,"
Yea, "with a sword."
Help us, O Lord!


O Massachusetts! In your golden prime,
Not with the bribe of time
You won her; subtle words and careful ways
In perilous days.
No! By your valor, by the patriot blood
Of your brave sons poured in a generous flood;
Peace, with a sword!
Help us, O Lord!


Bring out the banners that defied a king!
The tattered colors bring
That made a nation one from sea to sea
In godly liberty.
Unsheathe the patriot sword in time of need,
O Massachusetts, shouting in the lead,—
"Peace with a sword!
Help us, O Lord!"