the bursting shell, the gateway wrenched asunder

peter-bruegel-the-elder-dulle-griet

Peter Bruegel the Elder,  “Dulle Griet”  1562

Here are the last seven stanzas of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem “The Arsenal at Springfield” written in 1843:

:

The tumult of each sacked and burning village;

The shout that every prayer for mercy drowns;

The soldiers’ revels in the midst of pillage;

The wail of famine in beleaguered towns;

 

The bursting shell, the gateway wrenched asunder,

The rattling musketry, the clashing blade;

And ever and anon, in tones of thunder

The diapason of the cannonade.

 

Is it, O man, with such discordant noises,

With such accursed instruments as these,

Thou drownest Nature’s sweet and kindly voices,

And jarrest the celestial harmonies?

 

Were half the power, that fills the world with terror,

Were half the wealth bestowed on camps and courts,

Given to redeem the human mind from error,

There were no need of arsenals or forts:

 

The warrior’s name would be a name abhorred!

And every nation, that should lift again

Its hand against a brother, on its forehead

Would wear forevermore the curse of Cain!

 

Down the dark future, through long generations,

The echoing sounds grow fainter and then cease;

And like a bell, with solemn, sweet vibrations,

I hear once more the voice of Christ say, “Peace!”

 

Peace! and no longer from its brazen portals

The blast of War’s great organ shakes the skies!

But beautiful as songs of the immortals,

The holy melodies of love arise.

 

 

<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/pillage/”>Pillage</a&gt;

Published by ahiggins2013

poet, birder, senior citizen, cancer survivor, Catholic sister. Eight books of poetry published: At the Year’s Elbow, Mellen Poetry Press 2000; Scattered Showers in a Clear Sky, Plain View Press 2007; chapbooks: Pick It Up and Read, Finishing Line Press 2008, How the Hand Behaves, Finishing Line Press 2009, Digging for God, Wipf and Stock 2010, Vexed Questions, Aldrich Press 2013, Reconnaissance, Texture Press 2014, and Life List, Finishing Line Press, 2015.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

The religious imagineer

Where the fire and the rose are one

Gaudium et Spes 22

by Dr. Larry Chapp

Tikorangi The Jury Garden

Mark and Abbie Jury

I Love To Go A Gardening

Growing Our Life in Northern Michigan

Wonders in the Dark

Cinema, music, opera, books, television, theater

Mason Street

The literary magazine of Newark Public Library

Morse, Lewis and Endeavour

Welcome to the Morse Universe

Shades of My Garden

a window into a life, a conversation with a soul, a gateway to a heart

Slouching Towards Senescence

Aging woman reads, steeps tea, feeds cats and is ridiculous.....

Gather Victoria

ANCESTRAL FOOD. HERBAL WISDOM. MAGICAL COOKERY. SEASONAL CELEBRATION.

Kate Macdonald

about writing, reading and publishing

The Lore of the Garden

Myths, legends, folklore, fairytales about flora, fauna and sacred landscapes

OPreach

Dominican Preaching through Word and Image

My little corner of the world.

Faith, love, and listening to the language of the world.

chestercountyramblings

meandering through, writing about whatever strikes my fancy

maegregale.wordpress.com/

“But I ask myself, What must I do to make my life a true story?”

Jeffrey Levine

poetry, publishing, and mentoring

Creative Spiritual Directions

... reflections to inspire creative spiritual directions ... ... . . . .

%d bloggers like this: