Sunday, July 10, 2005

Terror, Heroism, and Anniversaries

O God of earth and altar,
Bow down and hear our cry,
Our earthly rulers falter,
Our people drift and die;
The walls of gold entomb us,
The swords of scorn divide,
Take not thy thunder from us,
But take away our pride.

From all that terror teaches,
From lies of tongue and pen,
From all the easy speeches
That comfort cruel men,
From sale and profundity
Of honor and the sword,
From sleep and from damnation,
Deliver us, Good Lord!

Tie in a living tether
the prince and priest and thrall,
Bind all our lives together,
Smite us and save us all.
In ire and exultation,
Aflame with faith and free,
lift up a living nation,
A single sword to thee.

Hymn: GK Chesterton
Image: J Powell, 'St Michael' from the Warminster Mosaic

BBC on the 60th Anniversary VE and VJ Day

Christopher Hitchens on London's Response (With apologies to PeepingThomists)


Mark said...

Apology accepted. :-)

Thanks for the poem; I don't know many of GKC's poems, but I ususally enjoy them when I happen to encounter them. This one is quite appropriate; good choice.

Kelly Jo said...

Sweet poem! GKC is awesome and I love his perception of the paradoxical.

Filia Dei said...

Glad you liked it! I discovered it because it was the page before the hymn we were singing in church: just one more advantage of living in England I guess.

I've linked in a page with two melody options. Canned MIDI, unfortunately, but better than naught.