Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, OLIVER'S ADVICE, by WILLIAM BLACKER



Poetry Explorer

Classic and Contemporary Poetry

OLIVER'S ADVICE, by            
First Line: The night is gathering gloomily, the day is closing fast
Last Line: Then put your trust in god, my boys, and keep your powder dry.


THE night is gathering gloomily, the day is closing fast --
The tempest flaps his raven wings in loud and angry blast;
The thunder clouds are driving athwart the lurid sky --
But 'put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry.'

There was a day when loyalty was hailed with honour due,
Our banner the protection waved to all the good and true --
And gallant hearts beneath its folds were linked in honour's tie,
We put our trust in God, my boys, and kept our powder dry.

When Treason bared her bloody arm, and maddened round the land,
For King, and laws, and order fair, we drew the ready brand;
Our gathering spell was William's name -- our word was, 'Do or die.'
And still we put our trust in God, and kept our powder dry.

But now, alas! a wondrous change has come the nation o'er,
And worth and gallant services remembered are no more;
And, crushed beneath oppression's weight, in chains of grief we lie --
But put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry.

Forth starts the spawn of Treason, the 'scaped of Ninety-eight,
To bask in courtly favour, and seize the helm of state --
E'en they whose hands are reeking yet with murder's crimson dye;
But put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry.

They come, whose deeds incarnadined the Slaney's silver wave --
They come, who to the foreign foe the hail of welcome gave;
He comes, the open rebel fierce -- he comes, the Jesuit sly;
But put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry.

They come, whose counsels wrapped the land in foul rebellious flame,
Their hearts unchastened by remorse, their cheeks untinged by shame.
Be still, be still, indignant heart -- be tearless, too, each eye,
And put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry.

The Power that led his chosen, by pillared cloud and flame,
Through parted sea and desert waste, that Power is still the same;
He fails not -- He, the loyal hearts that firm on him rely --
So put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry.

The Power that nerved the stalwart arms of Gideon's chosen few,
The Power that led great William, Boyne's reddening torrent through --
In his protecting aid confide, and every foe defy --
Then put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry.

Already see the star of hope emits its orient blaze,
The cheering beacon of relief it glimmers thro' the haze.
It tells of better days to come, it tells of succour nigh --
Then put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry.

See, see along the hills of Down its rising glories spread,
But brightest beams its radiance from Donard's lofty head.
Clanbrassil's vales are kindling wide, and 'Roden' is the cry --
Then put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry.

Then cheer, ye hearts of loyalty, nor sink in dark despair,
Our banner shall again unfold its glories to the air.
The storm that raves the wildest the soonest passes by;
Then put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry.

For 'happy homes,' for 'altars free,' we grasp the ready sword --
For freedom, truth, and for our God's unmutilated word.
These, these the war-cry of our march, our hope the Lord on high;
Then put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry.





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