THE KAISER AND GOD
by: Barry Pain (1867-1928)
- [I rejoice with you
in Wilhelms first victory. How magnificently God supported
him!Telegram from the Kaiser to the Crown Princess.]
ED by Wilhelm, as you tell,
- God has done extremely well;
- You with patronizing nod
- Show that you approve of God.
- Kaiser, face a question new--
- This--does God approve of you?
- Broken pledges, treaties torn,
- Your first page of war adorn;
- We on fouler things must look
- Who read further in that book,
- Where you did in time of war
- All that you in peace forswore,
- Where you, barbarously wise,
- Bade your soldiers terrorize,
- Where you made--the deed was fine--
- Women screen your firing line.
- Villages burned down to dust,
- Torture, murder, bestial lust,
- Filth too foul for printers ink,
- Crime from which the apes would shrink--
- Strange the offerings that you press
- On the God of Righteousness!
- Kaiser, when youd decorate
- Sons or friends who serve your State,
- Not that Iron Cross bestow,
- But a cross of wood, and so--
- So remind the world that you
- Have made Calvary anew.
- Kaiser, when youd kneel in prayer
- Look upon your hands, and there
- Let that deep and awful stain
- From the blood of children slain
- Burn your very soul with shame,
- Till you dare not breathe that Name
- That now you glibly advertise--
- God as one of your allies.
- Impious braggart, you forget;
- God is not your conscript yet;
- You shall learn in dumb amaze
- That His ways are not your ways,
- That the mire through which you trod
- Is not the high white road of God.
To Whom, whichever way the combat rolls,
We, fighting to the end, commend our souls.
POEMS BY BARRY PAIN
"The Kaiser and God" is
reprinted from A Treasury of War Poetry. Ed. George Herbert
Clarke. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co., 1917.