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[276]
     Where He hath bidden to Life's equal feast,
The starving many wait upon the few;
     Where He hath spoken Peace, His name hath been
The loudest war-cry of contending men;
     Priests, pale with vigils, in His name have blessed
The unsheathed sword, and laid the spear in rest,
     Wet the war-banner with their sacred wine,
And crossed its blazon with the holy sign;
     Yea, in His name who bade the erring live,
And daily taught His lesson, to forgive!
     Twisted the cord and edged the murderous steel;
And, with His words of mercy on their lips,
     Hung gloating o'er the pincer's burning grips,
And the grim horror of the straining wheel;
     Fed the slow flame which gnawed the victim's limb,
Who saw before his searing eyeballs swim
     The image of their Christ in cruel zeal,
Through the black torment-smoke, held mockingly
     to him!

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