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Spadina Literary Review  —  edition 1 page 15


What! Out of senseless Nothing to provoke
a conscious Something to assume the yoke
   of unpermitted pleasure, under pain
of everlasting penalties if broke!


What! From his helpless creatures be repaid
pure gold for what He lent them dross-allayed?
   Sue for a debt the paupers never did contract,
and cannot answer? — Oh the sorry trade!


Oh You who did with pitfall and with gin
beset the road I was to wander in,
   when You with preset evil us enmesh
how dare You then impute our fall to sin!


Oh You who man of baser earth did make,
and alongside Paradise devised the snake;
   for all the sin with which the face of man
is blemished, man's forgiveness give — and take!


As under cover of departing day
slunk hunger-stricken Ramadan away,
   once more alone within the potter's house
I stood surrounded by the shapes of clay.