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Joaquin Miller: The People’s Song of Peace


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

American writers on peace and against war


Joaquin Miller
The People’s Song of Peace

The grass is green on Bunker Hill,
The waters sweet in Brandywine;
The sword sleeps in the scabbard still,
The farmer keeps his flock and vine;
Then who would mar the scene today
With vaunt of battlefield or fray?

The brave corn lifts in regiments
Ten thousand sabres in the sun;
The ricks replace the battle-tents,
The bannered tassels toss and run.
The neighing steed, the bugle’s blast,
These be but stories of the past.

The earth has healed her wounded breast,
The cannons plough the field no more;
The heroes rest! O, let them rest
In peace along the peaceful shore!
They fought for peace, for peace they fell;
They sleep in peace, and all is well.

The fields forget the battles fought,
The trenches wave in golden grain;
Shall we neglect the lessons taught,
And tear the wounds agape again?
Sweet Mother Nature, nurse the land,
And heal her wounds with gentle hand.

Lo! peace on earth! Lo! flock and fold!
Lo! rich abundance, fat increase,
And valleys clad in sheen of gold!
O rise and sing a song of peace!
For Theseus roams the land no more,
And Janus rests with rusted door.

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