Verse > Anthologies > Harriet Monroe, ed. > Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, 1912–22
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Harriet Monroe, ed. (1860–1936).  Poetry: A Magazine of Verse.  1912–22.
 
The Everlasting Contradiction
By John Gould Fletcher
 
From “Modern Lamentations”

YESTERDAY I borrowed thirty silver pence
From Judas: he gave them with a grin.
Today, O Christ, I kneel before your cross.
 
Yesterday the Magdalen came to me and said,
“I am starving.” I answered, “First, to bed.”        5
Today, O Christ, I kneel before your cross.
 
Yesterday the Virgin passed sorrowing in the street:
I flung a brick at her. Then, as was meet,
I bore her to the house of Caiphas.
Today, O Christ, I kneel before your cross.        10
 
Yesterday Pilate asked me for water: I must go.
He beat me, for the ewer trembled so.
Today, O Christ, I kneel before your cross.
 
Yesterday, today, tomorrow, I am vile:
You hang there motionless and dead long while—        15
In your eyes, nothing; on your lips, a smile.
The world is rotten: would ’twould crash and pile
Upon me kneeling yet before your cross!
 
 
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