Home > Uncategorized > Isabella Banks: Absolve our souls from blood shed in our country’s cause

Isabella Banks: Absolve our souls from blood shed in our country’s cause

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Anti-war essays, poems, short stories and literary excerpts

British writers on peace and war

Women writers on peace and war

Isabella Banks: The bugle of war, the bugle of peace

Isabella Banks: “Glory, glory, glory!” As if murder were not sin!

Isabella Banks: Lay down weapons, war should cease

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Isabella Banks

From The Minstrel’s Meed

A minstrel lifted his voice on high:
Full in the ears of the gathering throng,
A pean of war and victory,
Like the blast of a trumpet, rolled along;
And fierce and fast did the pulses beat,
To the time and tune of that martial strain,
Of every man in the crowded street;
But a woman wept, she thought of the slain.

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From Thanksgiving at Sea

“Now, let us bend in prayer.”
Well disciplined, they kneel
As though one heart throbbed there
Within those frames of steel:
“O Ruler of the flood,
Of nations, kings, and laws,
Absolve our souls from blood
Shed in our country’s cause.”

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From The Creaking Door

Not even the maiden’s dainty nest
Sacred from their unhallowed quest.
And, wherever they go, there is clamour and clang,
And doors are opened and shut with a bang,
And riot is master, where peace was lord,
Riot that comes where the law is the sword.

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From The Owl’s Flight

All sights and sounds that filled the air
Were of havoc, slaughter, and despair
The clash of weapons, the shriek of pain,
The victors’ shout o’er the ghastly slain,
As tongues of flame licked up the gore
That ran in streams on each oaken floor.

 

 

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