The Peace Peal

(After Four Years of Silence)

Said a wistful daw in Saint Peter's tower,
High above Casterbridge slates and tiles,
" Why do the walls of my Gothic bower
Shiver, and shrill out sounds for miles?
This gray old rubble
Has scorned such din
Since I knew trouble
And joy herein.
How still did abide them
These bells now swung,
While our nest beside them
Securely clung! . . .
It means some snare
For our feet or wings;
But I'll be ware
Of such baleful things!"
And forth he flew from his louvred niche
To take up life in a damp dark ditch.
— So mortal motives are misread,
And false designs attributed,
In upper spheres of straws and sticks,
Or lower, of pens and politics.
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