Edwardian and Georgian Canadian Poets
Patriotic Verses
5th Jul 2016Posted in: Edwardian and Georgian Canadian Poets 0

[handwritten: Presented
To
Dr. Bourner of Bruce Nov. in Toronto.
An old highly esteemed and valued friend with good words and compliments of the author. Lt. Col. A. E. Belcher, Toronto, 1917]
[inside front cover]

[illustration:
Toronto, April 11th, 1916]

Lt. Col. A. E. Belcher the composer of these verses is of F. E. Loyalist descent on his mother’s side (she being of the old Grafton family), was born in Toronto in 1844.

He has had a long commercial, municipal and political experience.

Although having written a book in 1882 entitled “What I Know About Commercial Travelling,” which is now out of print, but had a large scale at that time, he never wrote any verses for publication.

He received the inspiration for writing most of these verses during church services in St. Paul’s (Anglican).

The first one composed, “Stand Up the Trumpet Call is Sounding” was at the time sung in some of the churches, which gave so much encouragement that further effort brought added results.

Having for years advocated the universal military training of boys, some eight organizations in which he had membership endorsed the principle, and encouraged the sending out of a little booklet to prominent persons. In doing so, he took liberty of sending some verses with it.

With one exception, the training was strongly endorsed. The kind and encouraging expressions used by any who replied, although unsought, have been most highly appreciated and valued.

Herewith are published some extracts from various letters received, which have been an incentive to well doing. While enjoying the pleasure of writing the verses, he trusts others will enjoy reading them, and some good is accomplished [unnumbered page]

EXTRACTS FROM LETTERS COMMENDING THE VERSES AND UNIVERSAL MILITARY TRAINING OF BOYS.

We have had much pleasure in reading your patriotic poems. “We Hear You Calling, Mother” and for the boys in Khaki” also your booklet “Universal Military Training for Boys in Canada.” and we congratulate you, both for spirit and loyal sentiment that pervades the verses, and also the appeal. You are rendering good service in arousing the people to do their duty in crisis.

SGD. LENA M. HENDRIE,
Wife of Honour Lt. Governor Mendrie.

I have to thank you for sending me the verses from your poetic pen. It was to me a surprise that you could produce effusions of such obvious merit and I am really glad to compliment, as well as to congratulate you. I am a believer in universal military training. Who could not be in times like these?

SIR JOHN M. GIBSON, K. C.,
Ex-Lieutenant Covernor of Ontario.

I have to thank you for your stirring hymn, “Stand Up, Stand Up: For Country,” inspired from the hymn, “Stand Up, Stand Up, for Jesus.”

JAMES TORONTO,
Bishop of Toronto.

I thank you for your poems which you have written on the war. All must admire and be edited by the patriotic sentiment which they so well express.

JOHN MONTREAL,
Bishop of Montreal.

Many thanks for sending me copies of the poems. They are deep and beautiful.

HONORARY LT.-COL. ARCHDEACON CODY, LL.D.,
Toronto

Your little poems. “Stand Up, The Trumpet Call is Sounding” and “We Hear You Calling, Mother.” I have read with great pleasure and profit. Permit me to congratulate you on these successful poems, and thank you for sending them to me.

W.J. WAUGH, M. D.,
Inspector of Schools for Ontario

I have received copies of your poems. They have the right ring about them as has all you write.

COL. GEORGE T. DENISON,
Police Magistrate, Toronto.

I have received copies of your poems. Let me commend you for the splendid spirit shown in them.

R.S. HUDSON,
Manager. Canada Permanent Mortgate Company.

Thanks for copies of your poems. Spirit, Rhythm, subjects are fine. Keep “a-goin’.”

HON. COL. JAMES L. HUGHES, LL.D.

I congratulate you on your fine verses.

DAVID CREIGHTON,
Deputy Receiver-General.

Thank you for copies of some of your poems. You are as skillful with your pen as you are with your tongue.

CHEVALIER J. ENOCH TOMPSON,
Counsul for the Netherlands.

[page 2]

I read your verses with much interest, and handing them to our photographer to make photographs and slides. Our boys will then be able to learn the verses and sing them suitable tunes.

C. FERRIER,
Superintendent, Victoria Industrial School.

Your poems are well worth emitting to memory. I will certainly make use of them at our recruiting meetings.

LT. COL. FAREWELL, K.C.,
Whithy.

Your excellent verses received. Allow me to congratulate you on the good work you are doing for King’s Country and Home.

J. LOCKIE WILSON
Inspector of Agriculture.

Your poems, so admirable, patriotic and virile.

LT. COL. DR. ALEXANDER FRASER,
Aid to Lt.-Governor.

Your poems breathe the true spirit of the Christian patriot. They are harmonious and dignified. I hope the well from which they spring is a flowing one. We cannot have enough for such inspiring verse.

LT. COL. L. W. BRUGE, K.C.,
Brandon.

Your poems breathe the spirit of the great times in which we are living, and we are a credit to your pen.

HON. JAMES DUFF,
Minister of Agriculture, Ontario.

I do not know how I can thank you enough for remembering me with copies of your splendid verses.

JAMES McLAUGHLIN, EX – M.P.,
Owen Sound.

I desire to congratulate you on your poems. They are predictable indeed to you intelligence as well as your ultra-loyalty.

J. E. MURPHY,
Capitalist, Toronto.

Your beautiful, practical effusions are appropriate at the present time. There is much in them as food for thought, and the sentiment is grand.

HON. T. S. SPROULE,
Senator, Markdale.

Your verses are truly excellent. May you continue in the philanthropic and patriotic well-doing that your life has always been noted for.

T. J. BRIDGE.

Your poems have the right swing and will give, I trust, as much profit to the public in reading them as the pleasure you received in writing them.

W. A. PORTEOUS,
Department Manager, T. Eaton Co., Winnipeg.

I believe that the singing by Boys’ Clubs, Cadet Companies, etc., of your verses to popular airs will be a great aid in the Universal Training of Boys.

REV. M. C. MacLEAN,
Secretary, Baptist Social Service.

[page 3]

I gladly received your interesting letter and the enclosed copies of your stirring poems which I have read, as also your booklet on “Universal Training of Boys in Canada.” Your poems have the right British ring about them, and I am sure would be popular with the brave boys in khaki. I warmly congratulate you on your poetic productions and your booklet. I have always been an advocate of military training of our boys.

HON. ADAM BROWN,
Hamilton.

Wide distribution of the poems ought to be a great value in helping recruiting, while the pamphlet on “Universal Military Training” sets forth the ideal that I have always held to be the rue one for a democratic country. Publish them as widely as you can.

DAVID HURON,
Bishop of Huron.

Many thanks for your splendid effusions with their loyal sentiment. I have shown them to quite a few of our friends. Those who don’t know you, after reading them, say they would like to meet you. So you will get yourself into trouble if you ever come down here.

COL. E. N. LEWIS. M. P.,
Ottawa

Commissioner Richards expresses his approbation of your poems and regards the sentiment you express as timely, patriotic and inspiring and trusts that in these days of trial and stress which our nation has been called to pass, these poems may inspire many hearts and encourage the spirits of all who read them as we believe they will.

ALBERT EASING (COLONEL),
Chief Secretary, Salvation Army.

I have read your poems with pleasure. The depth of sentiment and suitability of expression are just what might be expected from your pen. It goes without saying that anyone who has known him as long as I have (some forty years), that anything in the line of patriotic duty to which you give your attention is not only well done, but your enthusiasm is also infectious. I particularly commend your excellent booklet on “Universal Training for Boys”.

LT.-COL. J. H. SCOTT,
County Judge of Lanark.

Glad to receive copies of your poems. I am taking the liberty of publishing them.

REV. W. F. BROWNLEE (DEAN),
St. Thomas.

Thanks for the forcible verses.

REV. CANON PLUMPTRE,
St. James.

Your splendid martial and patriotic songs and poems merit a more imposing setting than that given to them in ephemeral leaves.

REV. DEAN HARRIS, LL.D.

I am obliged to you for sending copies of your verses on various war topics, which breathe a spirit of patriotism, and of service which was never more called for him that at the present time.

W.H. HEARST,
Premier of Ontario.

[page 4]

A PATRIOTIC MOTHER
(Dedicated to the Noble Women of Canada)

Who have and will send their Husbands, Sons, Lovers and Brothers to the Front to do their “Bit.”— By. Lt. Col. A. E. Belcher, President Defence Field Co ‘yr

They tell me, me bye’s in the trinches,’
   Whatever they made by that,
I know he’ll be in the fourth line
   As shure as his name is Pat.

Me old man faught before him,
   For the dear old Quane that’s dead.
An’ if he’s ineything loike his father
   For the King he’s blood he’ll shed.

IF he’ll foight like his father did,
   I’ll bliss the day he was born;
For min loike him is needed now
   To fight – from night till morn.

He was born bred a soger,
   An’ I know he’ll do his bit
To help them Frinch and Belgims
   Their rights and homes to git.

Pat’s not a sargint nor a general,
   But he’s made of the kind of stuff,
If he gets a chance at the inimy,
   They’ll soon cry – Hold, enough.

We wimmin folk do bless the day,
   And with pride we’ll sind our byes.
To fight for home and freedon,
   To bring us lasting joys.

May God bless all the sogers,
   And all the mothers too,
An’ all the swatehearts they lift behind,
   Of thim – there’s not a few.

An’ whin this war is over,
   Pat will sure  come home to me:
An’ if he don’t, I know he’s safe.
   In that blist eternity.

THE GOD OF BATTLES.

Oh, God of Battles, we look to Thee.
For strength to fight on land and sea,
For light, and right, and liberty.
Be with our men, now far away:
Shield them by night and guide by day:
Give them success – Oh, God, we pray.

Though knowest, O’ Lord, our heart’s desire
For peace, not war: for son and sire;
The aim for which we all aspire.
We watch the tidings swift as thought:
May wicked plans bet set at naught,
And Thine own will be in us wrought. 

God bless and aid and comfort give
To those who die and those who live,
And all the wrongs wilt Thou forgive. 
Watch o’er our loved ones in the field:
May minds and hearts all to Thee yield.
In sacrifice our blood is sealed. 

This world’s wild battles hang on Thee;
In Thy strong hands we plainly see,
When time is ripe, great victory
Will come to all our hearts distressed.
In Thee our consolation rests.
God give us peace. Thou Knowest best.

Oh, haste the time when wars shall end,
With tearful hearts our hearts we bend;
Thy merey Lord and favor send.
When peace on earth, to men good will,
Our battle cry will then be still;
With love and peace our lives will thrill.

LT.-COL. A. E. BELCHER.

Toronto. 1916.

1ST CHRONICLES, CHAPTER 19, VERSE. Tune C.M.

“Thine, Oh Lord, is the Greatness and the Power and the Glory, and the Victory.”

Oh, God of Hosts, Thy Power. Thy might,
    To us has oft been told.
Bare Thy strong arm for Truth and Rights;
   Then didst in days of old.

Oh, God of GREATNESS, only Thou
   Can still this troubled sea.
All things are in Thy hands to guide,
   We still all trust in Thee.

Oh, God of POWER, on Thee we call
   Without Thine aid what can we do?
Helpless we plead – oh, hear our prayer
   For power to conquer and subdue. 

Oh, God of GLORY, our hearts are knit to Thee
   In bonds of holy love – that service tries.
To share Thy glory is our heart’s desire;
   Grant us that peace which satisfies. 

Oh, God of VICTORY, for which we pray,
   Grant us Thy grace and strength divine.
To patient be in Hope and Faith,
   In insisting Love forever thine. 
    Amen.

LT.-COL. A. E. BELCHER.
Vice President Defence League.

[page 5]

“WE HEAR YOU CALLING, MOTHER.”

We hear you calling, Motherland,
   For men – to man your guns.
We’ll answer by our presence
   And prove we’re worthy sons.
The best we have are none too good
   To aid you and the right
For when we’ll sacrifice our all
   And help you win this light.

Our debt to you, dear Motherland,
   We’ll find it hard to pay;
The sum is great and long delayed.
   But now will come OUR day
To show you that the Lion’s Cubs
   Are strong in might and main.
We’ll fight for our dear Motherland
   While one us remain.

For we love you, dear old Motherland,
   For all the good that’s come 
To us and all your faithful friends,
   Our gratitude you’ve won.
The world will praise and less you
   In ages yet to come.
For honor, truth and liberty,
   The battles you have won.

May God bless one noble women,
   From the bumbles to the great;
They swell the ranks of workers
   From early morn till late.
We’ve always found the true as steel
   To aid and comfort give;
They know the cause is worthy,
   And they are faithful while they live.

God bless and keep you, Motherland,
   For standing by the right;
We’re glad to answer your call,
   And we’ll fight with all our night.
God bless our men, and victory give,
   And then the air shall ring
With songs of praise from thankful hearts
   To God our Heavenly King.

For He’s the God of Battles,
   His promises are sure,
To those who call upon His name,
   With faith in Christ endure;
And then with Crown of Glory 
   We’ll worship Him as King,
And with the angels ever,
   His praises we will sing.

LT.-COL. A. E. BELCHER.
Vice-Pres. Veterans of 1866, Toronto.

THE BRITISH LION SETS HIS JAWS.

We are coming, dear Old England,
   A Hundred thousand strong,
To help you conquer and subdue
   Men who have gone wrong.
Their crimes are so repulsive
   They appal the human mind,
Their punishment must be swift and sure
   To satisfy mankind.

Worse then savages are they;
   Void of all that’s fair and right,
Honor, truth and virtue dear,
   They’re east aside – like beasts they fight.
They must be met and beaten well,
   As Britors we’ll do this,
So firm and strong, men, grip your swords,
   And prove what your valor is. 

The men we send are true as steel,
   “They’re British to the core”
They’ll prove not faint-hearted ones,
   By deeds – as done of yore.
A noble work is theirs to do,
   They’re equal to the task,
And time will prove that our renown
   Is widespread – and will last.

Time will test our valor true;
   Inch by inch we’ll make our gain;
Britons never stoop to sue.
   Old traditions we’ll maintain,
Men like ours cannot be beat.
   At the, guards! the battle cry,
Show the world we don’t retreat;
   There’s but for us to DO or DIE.

The cause that Britain fights for,
   All true men love to aid;
For when the British lion growls,
   The best – needs to be afraid. 
We want to share the glory won.
   And to this, we do intend,
For when the Lion sets his jaws
   It’s BUISNESS – to the end.

No hands are lost. They’ve made no gains;
   We’re still the “Mistress of the Sea”;
The old flag is and ever was,
   The flag of the brave and free.
We’ll stand by you and the dear old flag,
   which has done so much for the world,
We’ll give our wealth – aye, yes, our lives,
   To keep it still unfurled.

LT.-COL. A. E. BELCHER.
Honorary President, Bruce Old Boys.
Toronto, 1915.

[page 6]

WHEN THE FIELDS ARE GREEN AND THE FLOWERS GROW.

Lay me aside from the cares of life
    When the fields are green and the flowers grow;
My sleep will be sweeter when the birds sing,
    For I think they will know that I love them so.

For while I lived on this beautiful earth
   They were a source of delight and comfort to me;
For I often talked and whistled to them
   As they sat on high in a favorite tree.

These birds skipped almost, both great and small;
The flowers nodded so sweetly to all,
That whoever happened to pass that way
Was certain to come on another day.

I used to long for the spring to come,
   And have them return to their favorite haunts,
Where the flowers bloomed and the food was good,
   Which they enjoyed after their long jaunts.

Then the days passed quickly, and the hour came
   When their leaders warned them, one and all,
To prepare for flight to the sunny South –
   A reminder to us of the coming fall.

The ripening grain and the fruit on trees
   All bore marks of Old Time in his flight.
The dark-grey clouds and the lengthening nights,
   More serous thoughts – Hope seemed less bright.

When the roses fold their silken leaves,
   The trees are stripped of their verdare green;
Life’s long night seems nearly closed.
   Onward – to Eternal Day is seen. 

We all await the certain flight,
   When time with us shall be more,
And happy us if the life spent here
   Will land us safe on the Heavenly Shore.

LT.-COL. A. E. BELCHER.
A. U. E. Loyalist

FOR THE BOYS IN KHAKI.
By Lt. Col. A. E. Belcher Hon. President of his Majesty’s Imperial Army and Navy Veterans.
Title: “Onward, Christian Soldiers.”

Onward, Valiant Soldiers.
  Fighting for the fight,
Hoist the flag of Britain
   Keep it well in sight.
It is clothed with glory,
   And will still prevail,
Representing truth and love,
   His enemies assail.

     Shout the cause of freedom
         And good will to me,
    God will aid and bless you,
         And bring you peace again.

Soldiers fought before you
   And gained great renown,
In their fight for liberty
   To preserve the Crown.
He who wears it’s worthy,
   May his rights maintain,
Till his subjects everywhere
   Are blest with lasting gain.

    Forward to your watchword,
       A victory to gain,
    You will reap the great reward
       Through peril, toil and pain.

Empires now must perish,
   But results will be,
For the Allies and ourselves 
    DECISIVE VICTORY.
Their with all rejoicing,
   With thankful hearts we’ll sing,
Praises through the ages.
   To our Heavenly King.

    We are not downhearted,
       Marching on to war,
    For we trust Our Leaders,
       Who have gone before.

We do not dream of shrinking;
   Till the task is done.
We see the signs of triumph,
   The battles almost won.
Courage!  Fellow soldiers,
   The strife will not last long.
Jehovah. He will conquer,
   And then the Victor’s song. 

     Glory to the Father,
        Loudest anthems raise.
     Cheer and swell your voices
         In everlasting praise. – Amen. [page 7]

BOYS DO YOUR “BIT”.

Come boys, get into the trenches,
   And show you’ve got the grit
And prove you’re British to the core,
   And keen to do your bit.

There ain’t no use in hanging back,
   You’ll lose your chance and name.
By showing the “white feather”
   With excuses poor and lame.

Your own folk won’t feel proud of you,
   And your pals – what will they say
If you keep hanging around the town
   Afraid to launch away?

Go, help to man the trenches,
   And help to play the game,
To win – for right and freedom,
   And Britain’s honored name.

We’ll win, of course, but you can aid;
   Then claim your just reward.
Go forth, my boys, all undismayed,
   That peace may be restored. 

When you come back, we’’ grip your hand,
   And slap you on the back,
And say, “Old man, you did your your bit”
   For the good old Union Jack.

LT.-COL. A. E. BELCHER.
Vice President, Veterans, 1866

“STAND UP, THE TRUMPET CALL IS SOUNDING.”
Dedicated to the Men of Canada by Lt. Col. A. E. Belcher, Vice President, Veterans, 1866.
Tune: “Stand up, Stand up for Jesus.”

Stand up, stand up for country,
   Ye valiant men and true;
In fight for home and freedom
   There’s work for you to do.
Life high the Empire’s colors,
   The enemy assails;
Your cause is true and righteous,
   And justice still prevails.

Go forth with dauntless courage
   Against the erael foes:
It’s only men with faith and truth
   Such devils dare oppose.
The task is great, but glorious;
   Obey your country’s call;
For sisters, lovers, mothers
   Ask you to risk your all.

Then spring to call of duty:
   God help us and sustain
The power of good old Motherland,
   And freedom shall remain
To bless the world and all therein;
   Then joy and peace and love
   Will lasting be eternally,
   And blessings from above. – Amen.

NO SURRENDER.
Tune: “Hurrah, hurrah! for England,” by “British Grenadiers”

To arms, to arms, my Comrades!
   We’ll battle for the right.
We will not yield to Prussia none,
   Our manhood, nor our might.
We’ll fight for freedom and our homes
   As our sires did before.
To glory – onward – Comrades,
   And peace for evermore.

Chorus:

Then to arms, to arms, my Comrades!
   Let all our foes remember
That freedom is our Battle Cry,
   Our Watchword, “No surrender.”

Surrender not, yet Britons!
   We’ll conquer in the end.
Cheer soldier heart, and do your part,
   For God, will right defend,
Then forward march to victory,
   And singing as we go,
God bless the Right and give us Might
   To conquer Britain’s foe.

Chorus:

Then to arms, to arms, my Comrades!
   Let all our foes remember
That freedom is our Battle Cry,
   Our Watchword, “No surrender.”

LT.-COL. A. E. BELCHER.

[page 8]

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