Saturday, December 21, 2019

John Steinbeck, The Grapes of Wrath


Opening Passage:

To the red country and part of the gray country of Oklahoma, the last rains came gently, and they did not cut the scarred earth. The plows crossed and recrossed the rivulet marks. The last rains lifted the corn quickly and scattered weed colonies and grass along the sides of the roads so that they gray country and the dark red country began to disappear under a green cover. In the last part of May the sky grew pale and the clouds that had hung in high puffs for so long in the spring were dissipated. The sun flared down on the growing corn day after day until a line of brown spread along the edge of each green bayonet. The clouds appeared, and went away, and in a while they did not try any more. The weeds grew darker green to protect themselves, and they did not spread any more. The surface of the earth crusted, a thin hard crust, and as the sky became pale, so the earth became pale, pink in the red country and white in the gray country.

Summary: The banks have been evicting small farmers and repossessing their farms in the aftermath of the Dust Bowl. The Joads are among them, and they pile all of the possessions they can into their rickety Hudson and head out for California. All sorts of handbills have been sent out asking for people to pick fruit, so surely there's work there. As they travel, however, a number of warning signs begin to develop: they meet a lot of other people doing the same, and everywhere they go, people are worn down with all the people passing through to get jobs in California. And in California itself, they find vast numbers of people looking for jobs, jumping on every employment opportunity they can find. The whole state is awash with migrant workers, and not enough jobs for them all. Which, of course, is deliberate.

When you have a large population of migrant workers, it's never the case that they just happened to be looking for a job and then were exploited. A large population of migrant workers is always, always, a sign of highly exploitative conditions that are making that flood of migrants. Say you are a landowner, growing fruit on your land for a nice price. You need fruit-pickers -- let's say a couple hundred. You hear about another area that is struggling economically. So you send out handbills, perhaps twenty thousand, promising work. You see, if you just sent out enough handbills to get your couple hundred workers, you'd have to pay them well. But if you ask for a couple hundred and five thousand show up, you can make your wages low, low, low, and desperate people will still jump on them in order to feed their children. Of course, you could just hire your couple hundred and try to pay them well anyway, but then the Farmer's Association might come around and tell you that if you keep paying your workers well, it will cause unrest among all the other workers hired by other people, and they can't have that; they will make sure that you never get a loan from the bank again -- risky investment, raising wages like that when you could pay so much less. If you're really savvy, you can get your pick of workers out in the middle of nowhere by paying wages that are moderately nice, at first, but collect some of it back by a company store. Your company store can sell at a higher price than they could get in town; if the cost is still less than they cost of the gasoline they would have to use driving back and forth, what else will they do but return some of your money to you, at a further profit to you? And as the numbers of workers build up, hoping desperately for a job, you can cut wages. And what will they do? They could go on strike, but you can pay for strikebreakers at the wages you started with, and lower those, too, when the police have helped you break the strike. Populations of economic migrants do not spontaneously arise like magic; they are created by people who benefit from them.

It's a self-interested system, not one that arises rationally from the actual needs of the situation. Steinbeck, in one of his semi-poetic interludes to the Joad family's troubles, and one of the candidates for my favorite passage, has a striking description of orange growers burning and destroying oranges to keep the price of oranges up:

The works of the roots of the vines, of the trees, must be destroyed to keep up the price, and this is the saddest, bitterest thing of all. Carloads of oranges dumped on the ground. The people came for miles to take the fruit, but this could not be. How would they buy oranges at twenty cents a dozen if they could drive out and pick them up? And men with hoses squirt kerosene on the oranges, and they are angry at the crime, angry at the people who have come to take the fruit. A million people hungry, needing the fruit—and kerosene sprayed over the golden mountains.

And the smell of rot fills the country.

It is profiteering by the cultivation of waste. No one may have the crumbs because they might not then buy the bread. If the poor can have the gleanings, you might not be able to squeeze a few dollars more out of them. So many people capable of doing so many things, and you waste all that ability by getting them into one place competing for a few jobs, just so you can keep the payroll costs down. The extra oranges must be burned, so that you can still charge twenty cents an orange for oranges gathered at two or three cents a crate. And the smell of rot fills the country.

The book is stylistically a bit uneven, I think; I'm not sure that Steinbeck quite manages to integrate the Joad passages with the more poetic passages in a completely adequate way. But the prose poetry is very effective at making this a novel not just about the Joads but about an entire country of which they are merely representatives.

I also listened to NBC University Theater's version of the story, which stars Jane Darwell, who had won an Academy Award for the same role in the more famous movie:

Like the movie, and perhaps a bit more so, it is fairly faithful, allowing for differences of medium. However, one thing that struck me is that both the movie and the radio play are more hopeful than the book is. When we get a phrase like "the people go on", said by Jane Darwell playing the role with all of her talent, it sounds like hope. But the Ma Joad of the book is not so much hopeful as practical; 'the people go on' is not an aspiration but a statement of a practical fact. The people go on because that's all there is to do, and they are used to doing it. It's not about looking to the future but about surviving today. The book is not without its version of hope, but it's not an exalting hope but the confined and limited hope that comes from making do, something a bit less like what we usually think of as hope and a bit more like relief at not having died yet. And with respect to the future, the overall tone of the book, as opposed to the movie and the radio episodes, has no hopeful tinge, but rather an ominous one: the grapes of wrath are being trampled out as the poor are being crushed, and there will be a reckoning.

Favorite Passage:

Ma studied him. Her hand went blindly out and put the little bag of sugar on the pile in her arm. "Thanks to you," she said quietly. She started for the door, and when she reached it, she turned about. "I'm learnin' one thing good," she said. "Learnin' it all a time, ever'day. If you're in trouble or hurt or need--to go poor people. They're the only ones that'll help--the only ones." The screen door slammed behind her.

Recommendation: Recommended. I found it a bit slow at the beginning, but it picks up once the story is not relying on Tom Joad alone.

Pieter Kanis

Today is the feast of St. Peter Canisius, Doctor of the Church, most famous for his catechetical work and often known as the Second Apostle of Germany. From A Small Catechism for Catholics:

What does the first article of the Creed mean, "I believe in God the Father"?

It shows first in the Godhead a person, namely the heavenly and eternal Father, for whom nothing is impossible or difficult to do, who produced heaven and earth, visible things together with all invisible things from nothing and even conserves and governs everything he has produced, with supreme goodness and wisdom.

What does the second article of the Creed mean, "And in Jesus Christ his Son"?

It reveals the second person in the Godhead, Jesus Christ, obviously his only begotten from eternity and consubstantial with the Father, our Lord and redeemer, as the one who has freed us from perdition.

What is the third article, "Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit"?

The third article proposes the mystery of the Lord's Incarnation: because the same Son of God, descending from heaven, assumed a human nature, but in an absolutely unique way, as he was conceived without a father, from the power of the Holy Spirit, born from the Virgin Mary who remained a virgin afterwards.

[Peter Canisius, A Small Catechism for Catholics, Grant, tr., Mediatrix Press (2014) pp. 12-13.]

Friday, December 20, 2019

Impeachment II

This impeachment is giving constitutional scholars a bit of a workout. Noah Feldman, one of the legal scholars who testified during the inquiry, argues that Trump has not been impeached:

Impeachment as contemplated by the Constitution does not consist merely of the vote by the House, but of the process of sending the articles to the Senate for trial. Both parts are necessary to make an impeachment under the Constitution: The House must actually send the articles and send managers to the Senate to prosecute the impeachment. And the Senate must actually hold a trial.

If the House does not communicate its impeachment to the Senate, it hasn’t actually impeached the president. If the articles are not transmitted, Trump could legitimately say that he wasn’t truly impeached at all.

That’s because “impeachment” under the Constitution means the House sending its approved articles of to the Senate, with House managers standing up in the Senate and saying the president is impeached.

This appears entirely false; the Constitution says nothing whatsoever about the House managers, nor about sending the articles to the Senate. It simply says that the House has "the sole Power of Impeachment", which implies that the House's power of impeachment is something it has in its own right, and not with respect to the Senate. Thus whom the House votes to impeach is impeached. This is the way it has always been interpreted; when the House managers stand up in the Senate and say that the President is impeached, they are reporting what the House has already done, not engaging in a performative act of impeachment.

Feldman goes on to recognize that technically the Constitution says nothing about sending anything to the Senate, but, he says, "the framers’ definition of impeachment assumed that impeachment was a process, not just a House vote." This is perhaps in some sense true, if we are taking 'impeachment' in the broadest sense; Hamilton in Federalist 65 says that the impeachment trial is a "method of national inquest into the conduct of public men". But impeachment itself is just charging someone with "high crimes and misdemeanors", and is distinct from the trial. And while it is true that the point of impeachment is to have an impeachment trial, it does not follow from this that impeachment itself requires anything more than an inquiry and vote in the House.

Contrary to what Feldman argues, the House did not vote "to impeach (future tense)" President Trump; what it voted on was the resolution, "That Donald John Trump, President of the United States, is impeached for high crimes and misdemeanors". And the House voted that yes, he is impeached. There is a future-tense part of the resolution, the resolution that the articles "be exhibited" to the Senate. But that is presented as an additional thing to the claim that Trump "is impeached".

But the fact that Feldman could even think this was a plausible argument is a sign of just how out in the deep waters we are; it's just not heard of for the House to vote for an impeachment resolution and then not send the articles to the Senate for the impeachment to be tried. (It also suggests very strongly, I think, that any attempt by Democrats in the House to go this route will backfire on them.)

Lying and Flattery

Amanda Patchin has an interesting discussion of Josef Pieper's 1974 booklet, Abuse of Language, Abuse of Power at "Front Porch Republic":

Pieper goes on to distinguish lying (mis-representing reality) from flattery (having any motive in speech other than aiming at truth), and it is this distinction I find most compelling. Lying as a tool of exploitation—understood in the context of political propaganda—is an obvious evil whose destruction is evident all around us. Flattery is a subtler evil whose insinuations debase our humanity while leaving us externally intact. Lying is the characteristic sin of Big Brother in Orwell’s 1984, and flattery is the characteristic sin of Brave New World. Any words that are spoken with the goal of achieving some end other than the communication of truth are flattery—even if they are actually true! The truth-content of the words is not the only component denoting their status as rightly-used language or wrongly-used language. Any abuse of words that debases their truthfulness or their intentions is, for Pieper, an "abuse."

Thursday, December 19, 2019


I haven't said much about the impeachment process, because there hasn't been much to say. Impeachment itself is just bringing charges; the charges that were eventually made were, I'm very sure, much more vague and less serious than Democrats were hoping. In principle, of course, since the point of impeachment is to give primacy to the legislature, the House can impeach any civil officer of the United States for anything whatsoever that it regards as misconduct; it is the sole authority on what counts as 'high crimes and misdemeanors', and the power has never been understood to require a legally defined crime at all. (In the first impeachment that went to conviction, that of John Pickering, it was universally recognized that there was no crime committed in a strict sense; Pickering was removed because he was a mentally ill alcoholic and was becoming increasingly erratic. Usually when an impeached official is convicted and removed, a criminal trial is held for the offenses, but nobody even tried to indict Pickering on anything. As a side note, one of the 'high misdemeanors' in his impeachment was that he was making a bad example because, when drunk, he swore, profaning the divine name in public.) In practice, it really needs to establish that something identifiable as a crime in at least a broad and loose sense has been committed. The charges against President Trump are 'abuse of power' and 'obstruction of Congress', which are about as broad and loose as you can get.

Some people have warned that this could set a precedent for attempting to impeach every President, but in fact we already live in this regime: Clinton was impeached; attempts to impeach both Bush and Obama were begun but petered out due to lack of political will and opportunity; Trump has been impeached.

Everything goes to trial in the Senate now, which alone has the power to remove a President from office; at least one of the two charges will require a guilty vote from at least two-thirds of the Senate for anything to come of it. In principle, if it convicts, the Senate can also disqualify the person in question from future office, but this is a hard sell even in very obvious cases. The Senate is the sole authority in such trials; famously, in the very first, that of Senator William Blount, the Senate opened its trial and then voted that the House of Representatives had no authority to impeach a Senator. (The Senate instead removed him by its own power to expel Senators.) This is why you find Democrats voicing the absurdity of not transmitting the articles of impeachment to the Senate; the Senate is not expected to push for conviction, and the Senate can pretty much do whatever it wants in the matter. To be wholly honest, I think it's a pointless game; the Senate explicitly has the power to try all impeachments, so if the House has impeached, the Senate could very well try it if it wanted, although there's no precedent for how to do that. Everything else is legislative courtesy. But if the House doesn't transmit, the Senate will likely just go on as it has been, as if there were no impeachment at all. A bizarre situation, but we seem to be in a snowstorm of bizarre situations.

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Evening Note for Wednesday, December 18

Thought for the Evening: Caring About and Caring For

Now that grading has been turned in and I no longer have to deal with (e.g.) students asking why they got an F on an assignment when they did almost half the work that was required, or demanding that I reassess every assignment they have done in the course so that they get the grade they wanted, or begging for extensions on something they literally had the entire term to do, I've been reading, among other things, Sandrine Berges's A Feminist Perspective on Virtue Ethics. I was particularly interested in some of the discussion of the relation between ethics of care and virtue ethics. One of the especially interesting parts is the discussion of the distinction between 'caring about' and 'caring for'. Ethics of care is based on 'caring for'; at least some care ethicists, like Nel Noddings, have been insistent on a sharp distinction between this and 'caring about'. Berges considers a number of aspects of this distinction, one of which is linguistic: is not clear that caring for and caring about should share a name; indeed, in some languages, they don't. If, for example, we try to translate care ethics into French, we can't. The French refer to it as "le care." And yet, there are French words to describe everything else that can be described as "care" in English. The word for care in "health care," "emergency care" or "first care" is soin. A "soin" is something that is given to someone who is hurt or requires attention. The verb soigner can mean to administer medical care or to pay particular attention to a task, as in "soigner son écriture" which means to write neatly. On the other hand, to say in French that we care about someone or something is to refer to one's emotional state:"avoir de l'affection," "tenir à coeur," "se sentir concerné" (to have affection for, t hold something close to one's heart, to feel concern for). These expressions cannot be substituted by the noun soin or the verb soigner. (pp. 155-156)

Berges notes that this is suggestive, not determinative, but if 'caring about' indicates an emotional response and 'caring for' indicates an engagement with a person, it would explain why Noddings makes the distinction in the way she does. On the other side, seeing it this way would explain how the two could be seen as related: in at least some kinds of virtue ethics, character is developed by training and educating our passions, so if 'caring about' is an emotional response, then it could be the kind of thing that needs to be trained into 'caring for'; caring about someone, we learn more about them so that we are able to care for them.

This is quite plausible, but there is another aspect to both that perhaps strengthens the point. 'Caring' always has a relation to attention. This is true etymologically ('care' historically has often indicated a kind of anxiousness), and sometimes in translating it into Romance languages one translates it by cognates of 'attention' or words that can also translate 'attention'. The connection to attention is found in care ethics, as well; Noddings takes caring for someone to involve three elements, engrossment, motivational displacement, and response. Engrossment is close, careful attention to the needs and wants of another person. So one could think of 'caring about' as covering various kinds of incipient attentiveness (some of which are surely those arising from certain emotional responses), which, when the 'caring about' involves caring about a person, can be developed into the kind of engrossment that leads to motivational displacement, their motivations becoming in a sense part of your own.

This also suggests a possible way in which a virtue ethics could 'locate' care in virtue ethics. In Western virtue ethics, there is an important virtue that is also closely connected with attention, prudence, which has solicitude as one of its acts. (See, for example, Aquinas, ST 2-2.47.9). Solicitude is discerning alertness to details relevant to acting; prudence, in its aspect of solicitude, pays attention to the things that tell one what needs to be done. Thus 'caring about' seems to be the kind of attention or vigilance of which prudence is the trained, excellent form; 'caring for' arises when one cares about someone in a deep way such as to make their response possible, and thus likewise is trained into prudence. ('Prudent' is after all related to 'provident' in the sense of 'making provision'.) That's at least one possibility, anyway.


Sandrine Berges, A Feminist Perspective on Virtue Ethics, Palgrave Macmillan (New York: 2015).

Various Links of Interest

* An interesting interview on French symbolism and the origins of analytic philosophy.

* Bill Vallicella on five grades of agnosticism.

* Mark Satta on sorites authoritarianism.

* Sandrine Berges, Sophie de Grouchy, at the SEP.

* Christina Lamb, When Courts Constrain Conscience

* Tony Christie discusses the centering of the medical field on physicians in the early modern period.

* Natasha Frost looks at the one-pot meal campaign of Nazi Germany.

* Gil Student on the miracle of Jewish history.

* Andrew Fiala, The Importance of Gratitude

* kaomoji

* Eve Tushnet reviews Sharon Leon's An Image of God: The Catholic Struggle with Eugenics

* An interview with Alexander Stoddart on public art

* A number of documents have come to light showing ways in which deception, disorganization, and corruption played a role in the U.S.'s handling of Afghanistan. Richard Hanania had a good breakdown on Twitter of some of the highlights, which you can find in a more readable form here. In effect, the U.S. established a kleptocracy and then did the worst possible thing -- we incentivized its corruption by throwing an immense amount of money at it. And except for occasional pushback from military personnel, almost everyone involved was more interested in symbolic victories than real solutions to problems. And it is, I am afraid, a concentrated epitome of everything that is currently wrong with the American political approach today.

* Gary Larson has put The Far Side on the Internet.

* Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry looks at our serious problem with pornography.

* Shawn Regan discusses why environmentalists don't usually try to protect land in the U.S. by buying it (short answer: for many of the kinds of land they want to protect, you are only allowed to have it if you agree to use it for resources).

* Nicolas Bommarito on modesty.

* I've been thinking about replacing one of the readings in my Ethics courses, and have had some difficulty coming up with something useful. But this is an interesting resource I came across in looking: Teaching Ethics with Short Stories.

* Maya Kosoff, Big Calculator: How Texas Instruments Monopolized Math Class

* An interview with Jared Ortiz on deification in the Latin tradition.

* John Brungardt, Those Two Roads: How a Natural Philosophical Solution to a Difficulty about Motion Serves Thomistic Theology

Currently Reading

John Steinbeck, The Grapes of Wrath
Sandrine Berges, A Feminist Perspective on Virtue Ethics
Michael J. Gilmour, Animals in the Writings of C. S. Lewis
Lisa Coutras, Tolkien's Theology of Beauty
Alexander Green, The Virtue Ethics of Levi Gersonides

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Joy and Sorrow

For Tolkien, joy and grief were closely linked. He describes the eucatastrophe as producing " a fleeting glimpse of Joy, Joy beyond the walls of the world, poignant as grief." In a letter from 1944, he explains that "Christian joy" may be accompanied by tears, for it has an essential similarity to sorrow, drawing from a state "where Joy and Sorrow are at one, reconciled." For Tolkien, "eucatastrophic" joy originates from beyond creation and time, in the realm of the eternal. The sorrow of tragic legend draws from the same timeless reality as this joy. He expresses this in the Great Music, wherein Ilúvatar's theme relays an "immeasurable sorrow" revealed in beauty. Sorrow probes the deep truths of reality, capable of expressing the light of transcendental beauty.

Lisa Coutras, Tolkien's Theology of Beauty, Palgrave Macmillan (New York: 2016) pp. 152-153.

Monday, December 16, 2019

Rosmini on the Magnificat

Con esso la Madre di Dio inaugur√≤, quasi direi, l’opera della Redenzione, anticip√≤ l’annuncio del Vangelo, proclamandone il tema, compendiandone la sapienza, profetandone gli effetti infallibili e meravigliosi a beneficio del genere umano.

With this incomparable song the mother of God may be said to have inaugurated the work of Redemption, and anticipated the promulgation of the Gospel by announcing its subject, epitomising its wisdom, and predicting its infallible and marvellous effects for the weal of mankind.

Among Bl. Antonio Rosmini's works is a short commentary on the Magnificat, which is a rather interesting work:

Italian: (PDF)

After an introduction, he divides the song into two parts. In the first part, the Virgin shows her awareness of what God has done, magnifying the Lord in soul (animal life) and in spirit (mind and will); as part of her pregnancy, she feels the greatness of God's work in her body, and she exults in it by her mind. Thus in a song about the child in her womb, she praises God as Savior, as her ancestor David had done, and that by her bearing the child, she is God's handmaiden in his work of salvation, for which reason she will be called blessed.

This opens the second part of the Magnificat, in which Mary sings as la Regina dei Profeti, the Queen of the Prophets, summarizing the effects of what God is accomplishing. All generations will call her blessed, a prophecy that has already been fulfilled, and, since faith and divine charity alone merits blessedness, that also shows her sanctity and dignity. However, she explicitly attributes this dignity to God; she has it not of herself but because God has done what is great in her. And in describing this work, she highlights that it is a work with three aspects. God has done this specifically as the Mighty One, as divinely omnipotent, and thus the work itself is such as to be appropriate to omnipotence, and her blessedness in proportion to that work. In this way, the Virgin speaks of a greatness beyond any mortal greatness, and a blessedness beyond even ordinary blessedness, but does so in complete humility. But God also performs the work as the one whose name is Holy. The angel, of course, had told her that the Holy that would be born of her would be the Son of God. Thus it is a work expressing the sanctity of God. And the third aspect is that it is a work expressive of the boundlessness of God's mercy, which is given to those who revere Him, from generation to generation.

Nor does she stop at summarizing what God has done in the Incarnation itself; she continues by singing of what God's mercy will do from generation to generation through it. "He has showed the might of His Arm" serves as the compendium of what follows, because "the Arm of God means the Son of God; because the Son springs from the Father as the arm from the body." It is, in other words, an allusion to Isaiah 5:9-11:

Arise, arise, put on strength, O thou arm of the Lord, arise as in the days of old, in the ancient generations. Hast not thou struck the proud one, and wounded the dragon? Hast not thou dried up the sea, the water of the mighty deep, who madest the depth of the sea a way, that the delivered might pass over? And now they that are redeemed by the Lord, shall return, and shall come into Sion singing praises, and joy everlasting shall be upon their heads, they shall obtain joy and gladness, sorrow and mourning shall flee away.

What Isaiah prophesied is now being fulfilled: the Arm of the Lord has put on strength, and will wound the Dragon that the delivered might pass over the mighty deep and the redeemed might come with everlasting joy to Zion.

Three serious evils infect the unredeemed world, and the Virgin now goes on to prophesy that the Lord will undo them:

(1) la superbia dei falsi sapienti, the pride of false sages
(2) la prepotenza dei forti, the tyranny of the mighty
(3) la dissolutezza dei ricchi, the dissoluteness of the rich

The Arm of the Lord will scatter the proud in the conceit of their hearts, the foolishness of God overcoming the wisdom of the world; He will cast the mighty from their thrones, exalting the humble by the preaching of His Church; and He will send the wealthy away and by the charitable work of His disciples fill the hungry.

In expounding this, Mary is also anticipating the teaching of her Son. (Rosmini mentions the Beatitudes in the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew in particular, but I think his point is even stronger if one looks at the corresponding passage in Luke 6, which we often today call the Sermon on the Plain, since it is inevitable in reading Luke to see it as calling back to the Magnificat: Blessed are the poor, for you shall receive the kingdom of God; blessed are the hungry, for you shall be filled; blessed are you who weep, for you shall laugh; blessed are you when you are hated, for your reward in heaven will be great. But woe to the rich, woe to the filled, and so forth.) The Holy Virgin is thus given the honor of being the first to proclaim the Lord's own teaching.

Christ, the Virgin Mary prophesies, will overcome the philosophers of the day, the imperial and royal powers, the wealthy; He shall do so by a wisdom that goes beyond the counsels of the human heart, by humility, and by satisfying the hunger of those in need. But the prophecy of the Virgin extends beyond us, for there is another thing that she attributes to the Arm of God: mercifully lifting up Israel from the ground as He had promised Abraham and Abraham's descendants since. Thus she affirms that God's promises to Israel are everlasting.

"In this Canticle, then," says Rosmini, "which is at once so simple and sublime, the predictions of the ancient prophets are summed up, the history of the Church is epitomised, the pith of gospel wisdom is concentrated, and the wonders of its infallible results are narrated." In a single panorama we find captured the whole Christian view of all of salvation history.

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Who for Their Saving Sendest Men to Men

Third Sunday in Advent
by Samuel John Stone

Let a man so account of us, as of the ministers of Christ, and
stewards of the mysteries of God. Moreover it is required in
stewards, that a man be found faithful. 1 Cor. iv. 1,2.

Deliver from blood-guiltiness—O Thou
Who for their saving sendest men to men--
Pastors and people, ere Thou com'st again:
Those, for the breach of every awful vow,
For hope once high made lowly memory now;
These, for the careless ear, averted eye,
The tongue fain to disparage or defy,
And wills that, wooed or warned, refuse to bow.
These have forgot that all they are is Thine
For use until Thine hour of love and wrath;
Those, that albeit frail men prepare Thy path,
Not seraphs, yet their mission is divine.
Deliver from blood-guiltiness, O Lord,
These shamers and those scorners of Thy word.