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Antichrist, Or The Reunion Of Christendom: An Ode

G. K. Chesterton

‘A Bill which has shocked the conscience of every Christian
community in Europe.’ —Mr. F.E. Smith, on the Welsh
Disestablishment Bill.
ARE they clinging to their crosses, F.E. Smith, Where the Breton boat-fleet tosses, Are they, Smith? Do they, fasting, trembling, bleeding, Wait the news from this our city? Groaning ‘That’s the Second Reading!’ Hissing ‘There is still Committee!’ If the voice of Cecil falters, If McKenna’s point has pith, Do they tremble for their altars? Do they, Smith? Russian peasants round their pope Huddled, Smith, Hear about it all, I hope, Don’t they, Smith? In the mountain hamlets clothing Peaks beyond Caucasian pales, Where Establishment means nothing And they never heard of Wales, Do they read it all in Hansard With a crib to read it with — ‘Welsh Tithes: Dr Clifford Answered.’ Really, Smith? In the lands where Christians were, F.E. Smith, In the little lands laid bare, Smith, O Smith! Where the Turkish bands are busy And the Tory name is blessed Since they hailed the Cross of Dizzy On the banners from the West! Men don’t think it half so hard if Islam burns their kin and kith, Since a curate lives in Cardiff Saved by Smith. It would greatly, I must own, Soothe me, Smith! If you left this theme alone, Holy Smith! For your legal cause or civil You fight well and get your fee; For your God or dream or devil You will answer, not to me. Talk about the pews and steeples And the Cash that goes therewith! But the souls of Christian peoples . . . Chuck it, Smith!
Online text © 1998-2014 Poetry X. All rights reserved.
From Poems | 1915
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