Home > Uncategorized > William Shakespeare: Nor more shall trenching war channel her fields, bruise her flowerets

William Shakespeare: Nor more shall trenching war channel her fields, bruise her flowerets

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

British writers on peace and war

William Shakespeare: Selections on war and peace

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William Shakespeare
From Henry IV, Part 1

So shaken as we are, so wan with care,
Find we a time for frighted peace to pant,
And breathe short-winded accents of new broils
To be commenced in strands afar remote.
No more the thirsty entrance of this soil
Shall daub her lips with her own children’s blood;
Nor more shall trenching war channel her fields,
Nor bruise her flowerets with the armed hoofs
Of hostile paces: those opposed eyes,
Which, like the meteors of a troubled heaven,
All of one nature, of one substance bred,
Did lately meet in the intestine shock
And furious close of civil butchery
Shall now, in mutual well-beseeming ranks,
March all one way and be no more opposed
Against acquaintance, kindred and allies:
The edge of war, like an ill-sheathed knife,
No more shall cut his master.

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