The vilest work of vilest man,
The cup that drugs, the sword that slays,
The purchased kiss of courtesan,
The lying tongue of blame or praise,
The cobra’s fang, the tiger’s tongue,
The python’s murderous embrace—
The wrath of any living thing
A man may fear but bravely face.
But thou, cold Mother, knowest naught
Of love, of hate, or joy, or woe
Thy bounties come to man unsought,
Thy curses fall on friend and foe.
Thou bearest balm upon thy breath,
Or sowest poison in the air
And if man reapeth life or death,
Thou dost not know, thou dost not care.
Thou art God’s instrument of fate,
Obedient, mighty, soulless, blind,
No demon to propitiate,
No deity in love enshrined.
Let him who turns from God away
To Bel or Moloch bend the knee;
Defile his soul to wood or clay,
Or thrill with Voodoo’s ecstasy.
Seek any fetich undivine,
Be any superstition’s thrall,
From Heaven or Hell will come a sign;
But thou alone art deaf to all.