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Poem by Arthur William Symons


Of Charity


A beggar died last night; his soul
Went up to God, and said:
'I come uncalled, forgive it, Lord;
I died for want of bread.'

Then answered him the Lord of heaven:
'Son, how can this thing be?
Are not my saints on earth? and they
Had surely succoured thee.'

'Thy saints, O Lord,' the beggar said,
'Live holy lives of prayer;
How should they know of such as we?
We perish unaware.

'They strive to save our wicked souls
And fit them for the sky;
Meanwhile, not having bread to eat,
(Forgive!) our bodies die.'

Then the Lord God spake out of heaven
In wrath and angry pain:
'O men, for whom my Son hath died,
My Son hath lived in vain!' 



                      Arthur William Symons


Arthur William Symons's other poems:
  1. Satiety
  2. Before Meeting
  3. Laus Mortis
  4. Toys
  5. The Last Memory


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