Once more, upon its fiery centre hung,
Has this great world its trackless orbit traced,
And still Thine offspring, God, are being flung
By cursed war, like compost on the waste—
Look on the killed, and those compelled to kill,
And peace create, Lord, if it be Thy will.
The silver moon that rules the grisly nights
Has registered but sighs and griefs and groans;
The stars have witnessed soul-distressing sights,
And of the dying heaven has heard the moans—
Behold, O God, the souls that slaughtered lie:
To Thee, the Lord of Peace, for peace we cry!
The dew upon the fields of France is red,
And Belgium, battered, bruised, and bleeding lies;
Trembles the earth beneath the martial tread
Of myriads, who shall fall no more to rise—
Bring to an end, O Lord, this brutal strife,
And grant Thy people poor, a tranquil life.
The welkin shakes with bursting shot and shell,
Uprooted hills are to the heavens hurled,
And from the fierce infernal regions hell
Has let her legions loose upon the world—
Look, Lord, upon Thy people’s sorrows sore,
And in Thy mercy early peace restore.
What comes tomorrow none of us can tell:
Shall New Year bells the Saviours advent ring?
Or shall this hell a still more horrid hell
With all its woes upon Thy creatures bring?
O Lord, rebuke the foe! For Thee we wait,
For Thou alone canst lasting peace create.