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Address and Welcome to J. B. Gough
Welcome! Oh, welcome! in thy course of fame— Through rolling clouds of smoke and lurid flame, Belched from a hundred murky piles—at last Thou com'st, and scared Intemperance stands aghast. To charm the adder deaf, we lack the power— Thy potent aid we crave, in this the hour And power of darkness. Wisely thou can'st charm— Unstop the serpent's ear, his sting disarm; Cry, cry aloud, and spare not; lift on high Thy voice of power, till quailing demons fly Their wonted haunts; extinguish thou and quell, With waves of eloquence, the fires of hell— Those fires that scorch the tongue and fire the brain; That feed Death's engines, linked to Ruin's train, Dragging the inebriate, lost, through horrors dire, Till 'neath the grinding wheels the wretch expire! To red Crimea's corse-encumbered dells, Where war with sickness, death, and carnage dwells, All eyes are turned; all ears to hear are strained Of fierce assault, and 'leaguered fortress gained— But higher, holier, stern, though bloodless war, 'Gainst foe more terrible than Russia's Czar, Thou hast proclaimed—God shield thee in the fight!— His forts and towers of strength, raze, raze them quite! Accept the deepest, dearest thanks of those Who, sharing not the sin, yet share the woes And shame incurred by lost degraded ones— Intemperate fathers, mothers, husbands, sons! "Who winneth souls is wise"—in God's own might Go on; thy path shall like the morning light Wax brighter, till the noon of perfect day Shall blind, and scorch, and scare the fiend away!
Janet Hamilton's other poems:
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