NEAR neighbors, as Edson and West,
Held commerce, professing good will,
With daggers at each other's breast,
To show themselves ready to kill:
Can men of sense expect to see,
The fruits of love from such a tree?
Ye nations of Christendom, hark!
I tell you a sorrowful story;
Your Princes are yet in the dark,
Though they in this policy glory:
The way of peace they little know,
But still the seeds of mischief sow.
By treaties, professions, and forms, They mutual Affiance proclaim; While open Dependence on arms, Says, Friendship is only a name : If we may judge from what appears, Kings deem each other Bucaniers.
By weapons of death in their hands, Each nation announces to others, 'We view you as robbers in bands, Disposed to make war on your brothers: ' This is the princely martial styleThus Kings by deeds do Kings revile!
While Rulers such insults pursue,
Proclaiming each other as knaves,
And arming as banditti do,
Poor Soldiers are treated as slaves:-
How great relief would subjects find,
Were Princes prudent, just, and kind!
Were Monarchs but Christians indeed,
Esteeming each other as just;
No longer the nations would bleed
By avarice, ambition, and lust:
Oppression's hand would cease to grind,
And Love and Peace would bless mankind.
How shameful if Kings are so vile,
As they of each other declare,
That subjects are fleeced all the while
Their mischiefs to check or repair!
States surely need some better things,
Than princely robbers for their Kings!