Janet Hamilton

(1795-1873 / Scotland)

America-- - Poem by Janet Hamilton

'Peace, peace, O peace!' sweet peace, descend,
The cloud of war asunder rend;
Thy gentle reign alone restores
Rest to Columbia's ravaged shores!

Peace, peace! Shall still your brother's blood
Cry from the ground-'the purple flood
Is swelling high, soon to o'erflow
In tides of ruin, shame, and woe?'

Peace, peace! We know your ends and aims,
Your wild, ambitious, monstrous claims;
The States shall reign, the globe a throne,
Your sceptre sway the world alone!

Peace, peace! Wild dreamers, what are ye?
A people now or yet to be?
Or but a rude conglomeration
Of every kindred, tongue, and nation?

Peace, peace! No more of boast or vaunt,
Of false pretence, or lying cant;
Is it, indeed, to free the 'niggers'
You lap white blood like thirsty tigers?

Peace, peace! and hold your braggart tongue,
Tall for your years, wild, reckless, young;
We've borne it long, but there's an end,
Beware, my boy, your speech amend!

Peace, peace! O pause, and take a breath;
Your horrid carnival of death
Is so exhausting; credit, gold,
Blood, name, and fame-all, all are sold!

Peace, peace! I've heard the lying mouth
Say all 'your sympathies go South,'
'Tis false! aversion, horror, scorn
Is due where slaves are bred and born!

Peace, peace! Let go the South for ever,
United States again? no-never!
The bond is loosed, the die is cast,
The Rubicon of Fate is passed!

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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, September 7, 2010

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