Tuesday, March 15, 2016

The Poor of London

ALMIGHTY GOD, whose Justice, like a sun
   Shall coruscate along the floors of heaven:
Raising what’s low, perfecting what’s undone,
   Breaking the proud, and making odd things even.
The Poor of Jesus Christ along the street
   In your rain sodden, in your snows unshod,
They have no hearth, nor rook, nor daily meat,
   Nor even the bread of men; Almighty God.

The Poor of Jesus Christ whom no man hears
   Have called upon your vengeance much too long.
Wipe out not tears but blood: our eyes bleed tears:
   Come, smite our damned sophistries so strong,
   That thy rude hammer battering this rude wrong
Ring down the abyss of twice ten thousand years.

~Hilaire Belloc: Verses and Sonnets.

Applicants for Admission to a Casual Ward, by Luke Fildes (1844-1927);
depiction of the poor seeking lodging in England in 1874.

Share This