Saint Peter (Henry Lawson)

Bij de 24e zondag door het jaar

 

 
Het sacrament van de wijding
(Christus presenteert de sleutels aan de heilige Petrus) door Nicolas Poussin, ca. 1630

 

Saint Peter

Now I think there is a likeness
‘Twixt St. Peter’s life and mine,
For he did a lot of trampin’
Long ago in Palestine.
He was ‘union’ when the workers
First began to organise,
And — I’m glad that old St. Peter
Keeps the gate of Paradise.

When the ancient agitator
And his brothers carried swags,
I’ve no doubt he very often
Tramped with empty tucker-bags;
And I’m glad he’s Heaven’s picket,
For I hate explainin’ things,
And he’ll think a union ticket
Just as good as Whitely King’s.

He denied the Saviour’s union,
Which was weak of him, no doubt;
But perhaps his feet was blistered
And his boots had given out.
And the bitter storm was rushin’
On the bark and on the slabs,
And a cheerful fire was blazin’,
And the hut was full of ‘scabs.’

*****

When I reach the great head-station —
Which is somewhere ‘off the track’ —
I won’t want to talk with angels
Who have never been out back;
They might bother me with offers
Of a banjo — meanin’ well —
And a pair of wings to fly with,
When I only want a spell.

I’ll just ask for old St. Peter,
And I think, when he appears,
I will only have to tell him
That I carried swag for years.
‘I’ve been on the track,’ I’ll tell him,
‘An’ I done the best I could,’
And he’ll understand me better
Than the other angels would.

He won’t try to get a chorus
Out of lungs that’s worn to rags,
Or to graft the wings on shoulders
That is stiff with humpin’ swags.
But I’ll rest about the station
Where the work-bell never rings,
Till they blow the final trumpet
And the Great Judge sees to thin

 

 
Henry Lawson (17 juni 1867 – 2 september 1922)
De katholieke St Joseph’s Church in Grenfell, New South Wales, de geboorteplaats van Henry Lawson

 

Zie voor de schrijvers van de 16e september ook mijn volgende blog van vandaag.

 

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