The Great War

from Songs & Sonnets for England in War Time, an electronic edition

Evening Prayer of a People

Sunday, August 9, 1914

Lord, from this storm-awakened isle,

At this dark hour on land and sea,

'Twixt bugle-call and Sabbath bell

Go up our prayers to Thee.

For the long years of sanctuary

We tender thanks, O Lord!

For peaceful fields and sacred hearths,

And the unused sword.

Thine be the praise! And now when quakes

The world, and trials come,

O God! preserve inviolate

Our ancient island Home!

O! had we died untried, unproved,

And missed this hour of stress! --

Praise be to God for this last gift,

The joy of steadfastness!

Where'er our people be to-night,

Our husbands or our sons,

Tossed on the thunder-bolted deep,

Or bivouacked by the guns;

Treading the mire of foreign lands,

Or guarding our native coasts,

Be Thou their Shield and Comforter,

We pray Thee, God of Hosts!

Glasgow Evening News, August 9, 1914