new zealand electronic poetry centre


Robin Hyde

Persephone in Winter

One may commit
(Quite without meaning so), the most
Uncalled-for sins against the Holy Ghost.
These, say the grave words, nothing can forgive;
No soul can wander blinded thus, and live.
Yet, if Christ mentioned it,
Or if some fierce-eyed follower wrote that bit,
I think they knew not then the entangled heart,
The desperate littleness of human wit;
Kindliness like the scapegoat driven apart,
Ages of bloody conflict to begin
Out of our simplest arguments on sin.
Later, He saw the stubborn, frightened face
Of one who like a child, fierce in disgrace,
Spat from his cross on Beauty, as he’d fought
Against the ugliness a life had wrought.
"This night, thou'lt sup with Me in Paradise."
(Thus to the wincing mouth, the grateful eyes.)
Yet, if they told us true,
When sweat and shame of Calvary were o’erpast,
I think He leaned towards that other, too.
I think His blue lips whispered at the last
Imperiously, "I wait . . . I wait for you."


Last updated 24 September, 2003