The Better Time

Bright and glorious days are coming,
War and bloodshed yet shall cease,
Impliments of war shall moulder,
Nations yet shall live in peace.
Bright and glorious days are coming,
Intemperance must be chased away,
Nor to its sad impending evils
Shall man always be a prey.
Bright and glorious days are coming,
And the slave must be set free;
Man oppressing, buying, stealing,
Very soon must cease to be.
Bright and glorious days are coming,
And the church shall yet be one;
Though she is not all we wish her,
Still her darkest days are gone.
Bright and glorious days are coming,
Error before truth must fall;
Though old bigotry befriend her,
Truth will triumph over all.

Title:The Better Time

Author:W. W.

Publication:North Cheshire Herald

Published in:

Date:June 20th 1863

Keywords:religion, slavery, war


Although it does not mention the American Civil War explicitly, the linking of slavery and war in this piece would certainly suggest to the reader that this was its main subject. By mid-1863 most observers had noted the upper hand the Union had in military terms over the Confederacy, and a northern victory was widely expected. In areas such as North Cheshire which were heavily dependent on the cotton industry (the still extant Quarry Bank Mill is in this region) this expectation was frequently expressed in newspaper poetry. There is however a strong religious element to this poem, and it appears that one of the other hopes expressed by the poet relates to greater unification of ‘the church’, almost certainly the Church of England, which had been under intense pressure from dissenting alternatives for many years, especially in the north of England. – SR