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Ballads and Lyrics of Socialism 1883-1908 . Nesbit, E. (Edith), 1858–1924.
page: 66


  • FOR what wilt thou sell thy Lord?
  • ‘For certain pieces of silver, since wealth buys the world’s good word.’
  • But the world’s word, how canst thou hear it, while thy brothers cry scorn on thy name?
  • And who shall thy bargain content thee, when thy brothers shall clothe thee with shame?
  • For what shall thy brother be sold?
  • ‘For the rosy garland of pleasure, and the coveted crown of gold.’
  • But thy soul will turn them to thorns, and to heaviness binding thy head,
  • While women are dying of shame, and children are crying for bread.
  • For what wilt thou sell thy soul?
  • ‘For the world.’ And what shall it profit, when thou shalt have gained the whole?
  • What profit the things thou hast, if the thing thou art be so mean?
  • Wilt thou fill, with the husks of having, the void of the might‐have‐been?
  • ‘But, when my soul shall be gone,
  • No more shall I fail to profit by all the deeds I have done!
  • And wealth and the world and pleasure shall sing sweet songs in my ear
  • When the stupid soul is silenced, which never would let me hear.
page: 67
  • ‘And if a void there should be
  • I shall not feel it or know it; it will be nothing to me!’
  • It will be nothing to thee, and thou shalt be nothing to men
  • But a ghost whose treasure is lost, and who shall not find it again.
  • ‘But I shall have pleasure and praise!’
  • Praise shall not pleasure thee then, nor pleasure laugh in thy days:
  • For as colour is not, without light, so happiness is not, without
  • Thy Brother, the Lord whom thou soldest—and the soul that thou hast cast out!