Simon Surnamed Peter Print
By Edgar Lee Masters   
Monday, 18 July 2011

Time that has lifted you over them all –
O’er John and o’er Paul;
Writ you in capitals, made you the chief
Word on the leaf –
How did you, Peter, when ne’er on His breast

You leaned and were blest –
And none except Judas and you broke the faith

To the day of His death, –
You, Peter, the fisherman, worthy of blame,

Arise to this fame?


'Twas you in the garden who fell into sleep

And the watch failed to keep,
When Jesus was praying and pressed with the weight

Of the oncoming fate.
‘Twas you in the court of the palace who warmed

Your hands as you stormed

At the damsel, denying Him thrice, when she cried:

“He walked at his side!”

You, Peter, a wave, a star among clouds, a reed in the wind,

A guide of the blind,

Both smiter and flyer, but human alway, I protest,

Beyond all the rest. . . .

You were called by Him, Peter, a rock, but we give you the name

Of Peter the Flame.
For you struck a spark, as the spark from the shock

Of steel upon rock.
The rock has his use but the flame gives the light

In the way in the night: – Oh Peter, the dreamer, impetuous, human, divine,
Gnarled branch of the vine!


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