Janet Hamilton

1795-1873 / Scotland

Addressed To Mr. John Fairlie

Calling a world to arms-I hear from far
The pealing clangours of the trump of war;
The horizon political flames forth
Her angry lightnings from the lurid North;
Old ocean groans, and earth resounds beneath
The warriors' tread-the freighted stores of death;
While weeping Peace, her features marr'd and blench'd,
Her olive trampled, and her white robe drenched
With blood and tears, insulted, baffled, yields
To demon War-red king of bloody fields.
From scenes, from sounds like these, I turn with joy,
My friend, to hail thee, blest in thine employ;
Approved thy labours-through thy long career,
With jubilee honours crowned thy fiftieth year
Of faithful teaching, zealous, patient care
To rear the tender thought to stature fair;
Strong manhood, joyful youth, fair children claim
A grateful interest in thy honoured name.
Thy children, where are they?-they come! they come!
To light with filial love their childhood's home,
And with their gracious presence shed o'er all
The scene a charm, and gild the festive hall
With beaming smiles; their looks of reverend love
To thee, thou honour'd sire, sweet welcome prove.
Though not with toast, and speech in phrases meet,
This night, my friend, may I thy presence greet,
Nor join to celebrate with pupils, friends,
This happy day-not mine their wish transcends
The grateful meed of well-earned praise to pour,
With honours due, in this auspicious hour.
Friend of thy country's fathers' church, and mine,
Firm in her sacred cause, through storm and shine,
Guard well her rights; invoke the God of might,
Though enemies roar, let God defend the right:
He'll purge and purify His church, and there
He'll make us joyful in His house of prayer.
My friend, farewell! calm be the hour, and bright,
When on thy spirit's eye the shores of light,
Dress'd in celestial radiance, gently swell,
In hope to meet thee there. Again, farewell!
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