World Wide Peace

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a cappella SATB - words and music by William Ramsey - arr. Peter Amidon

Sung here by the Friends-of-the-Amidons-Singers. William Ramsey, a gospel music writer and publisher in Little Rock, Arkansas, composed this on the eve of World War I. We learned the song from the singing of Mike Seeger, who probably learned it from the singing of the great Ozarks singer Almeda Riddle. According to Dave Para and Cathy Barton, Almeda riddle recalled this song when her own son enlisted for World war II, and wrote the last verse herself.

LYRICS

World Wide Peace
Will Ramsey • 1917 • Arkansas
last verse by Almeda Riddle

Dear heavenly father, would thou deign to hear us
And order all warring to cease.
O grant, gracious father the ushering in
Of the dawning of world wide peace.

CHORUS
Peace, peace, sweet dove of peace
Let your wide wings encircle the globe
O lord how we pray, and we hope every day,
For the dawning of world wide peace.

Save from the slaughter of blood thirsty rulers
Our fathers, brothers, husbands and our sons.
Grant that sweet rivers of peace will soon flow
Where the blood of our own now runs.

Beating our weapons of war into plowshares
And sowing the battlefields in wheat;
Feeding the hungry of every nation
And living at last in peace.

Tags: Sacred, secular, a cappella