Friday, September 4, 2015

"They won't let us talk about God"

   The tragic open secret of
   a political party's fabri-
   cation of religious perse-
   cution, on the basis of a
   failure of its bigotries,
   is not remotely only an A-
   merican dilemma. But it's
   also not a proud American
   tradition, unless we mean
   the term as Homer did, as
   the harbinger of contempt.

      If others in the same glass better see,
      'Tis for themselves they look, but not for me:
      For my salvation must its doom receive
      Not from what others, but what I believe.

   I'd go into the dock with
   Dryden, before all the Ju-
   lius Streichers ever call-
   ed to lead their movement.

John Dryden
Steven N. Zwicker and
  David Bywaters, editors
Selected Poems
  Religio Laici
Penguin Books, 2001©
op. cit.


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