1780
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Apostrophe to Peace.

Scots Magazine 42 (November 1780) 607.

Anonymous


An allegorical ode in eight couplet quatrains in the manner of William Collins's Ode to Peace: "Descend, bright Pow'r, and bring with thee | Thy well-belov'd, fair Liberty; | And Plenty blithe, that 'midst thy shining train, | Her flowing tresses decks with golden grain." This poem marks quite a contrast with the belligerent poetry published in the Scots Magazine a few years earlier; the war in America had not been going well.



Daughter of him at whose command
The sword devours a guilty land,
Who calls the furies from the realms profound,
And bids Destruction walk the dreadful round,

Tho' stranger long to Britain's isle,
Propitious deign at length to smile,
At length propitious deign to turn afar
The horrid edge of wide-destroying War.

Britain, with native blood distain'd,
Implores at length thy saving hand,
While War licentious spreads the ample plain
With blood, and dust, and mountains of the slain.

From the fair mansions of the sky,
Where thou, enthron'd, dost sit on high,
Goddess, descend! thou of celestial birth,
Revisit once again the sons of earth.

For thee at first th' Almighty Pow'r
Call'd forth in the creating hour,
Bade jarring elements their discord cease,
And anarch Chaos yield the throne to Peace.

Descend, bright Pow'r, and bring with thee
Thy well-belov'd, fair Liberty;
And Plenty blithe, that 'midst thy shining train,
Her flowing tresses decks with golden grain.

Thy balm the rankling wounds can heal,
Deep open'd by the vengeful steel;
Thy lenient arts the glowing pangs assuage,
Of foreign tumult, and intestine rage.

Long on the globe thy gifts dispense,
On Britain shed thy influence:
With joy her sons, with plenty deck her plain,
That Wealth and Peace may speak a happier reign.

[p. 607]