Winter's Ravages, An Appeal To The Rich On Behalf Of The Poor Poem by Thomas Cowherd

Winter's Ravages, An Appeal To The Rich On Behalf Of The Poor

Stern Winter on foul mischief bent
Left his cold region of the North;
As his Advance-guard early sent
Loud howling blasts and snow storms forth.

These warriors hastened to obey
The mandate of their frost-robed King,
And as they came the Orb of Day
Withdrew his rays which gladness bring.

They, gathering strength as nigh the drew
Unto our homes, spread ruin round,
And thus transformed each beauteous view,
And in white mantle clad the ground.

Before their track lay pastures green,
While root crops in abundance told
How fruitful had the Summer been
Ere she away from us had rolled.

Behind them was a widespread waste
Of leafless trees and drifting snows,
And still with most malicious haste
They dealt around their chilling blows.

Anon their King in ice-car rode
With furious speed, and placed his seal
Upon the devastation broad,-
Exulting in his savage zeal.

This done, fair Nature at his feet
Lay prostrate in the arms of death!
And now the poor lack food and heat,
Benumbed by his dread icy breath.

For in our great Commercial World
Loud storms have rung their changes round,
While some are from high station hurled
And in chill Penury are found.

Our Workshops, erst with men well filled,
The scenes of Trade's most busy strife,
Are almost silent now, and skilled
Mechanics want the means of life.

And shall it e'er be said of those
Who have of means a full supply,
That avarice has their heart's blood froze,-
That they can see their brethren die?

Forbid it, O Thou gracious One,
From whom we every good obtain;
O, melt the hardest heart of stone,
And quell its cruel thirst for gain!

That those who have may freely give
Of food and clothes a plenteous store
To help the needy now to live:
'Those tend to God who help the poor.'

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