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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–1882).  Complete Poetical Works.  1893.
 
Christus: A Mystery
Part I. The Divine Tragedy.
The Second Passover.
X. Born Blind
 
A JEW.
WHO is this beggar blinking in the sun?
Is it not he who used to sit and beg
By the Gate Beautiful?

ANOTHER.
                        It is the same.
 
A THIRD.
It is not he, but like him, for that beggar
Was blind from birth. It cannot be the same.        5
 
THE BEGGAR.
Yea, I am he.

A JEW.
        How have thine eyes been opened?
 
THE BEGGAR.
A man that is called Jesus made a clay
And put it on mine eyes, and said to me:
Go to Siloam’s Pool and wash thyself.
I went and washed, and I received my sight.        10
 
A JEW.
Where is He?

THE BEGGAR.
                I know not.

PHARISEES.
                        What is this crowd
Gathered about a beggar? What has happened?
 
A JEW.
Here is a man who hath been blind from birth,
And now he sees. He says a man called Jesus
Hath healed him.

PHARISEES.
                As God liveth, the Nazarene!
        15
How was this done?

THE BEGGAR.
                    Rabboni, he put clay
Upon mine eyes; I washed, and now I see.
 
PHARISEES.
When did he this?

THE BEGGAR.
                Rabboni, yesterday.
 
PHARISEES.
The Sabbath day. This man is not of God
Because he keepeth not the Sabbath day!        20
 
A JEW.
How can a man that is a sinner do
Such miracles?

PHARISEES.
                What dost thou say of him
That hath restored thy sight?

THE BEGGAR.
                        He is a Prophet.
 
A JEW.
This is a wonderful story, but not true.
A beggar’s fiction. He was not born blind,        25
And never has been blind!

OTHERS.
                    Here are his parents.
Ask them.

PHARISEES.
                Is this your son?

THE PARENTS.
                            Rabboni, yea;
We know this is our son.

PHARISEES.
                    Was he born blind?
 
THE PARENTS.
He was born blind.

PHARISEES.
                Then how doth he now see?
 
THE PARENTS, aside.
What answer shall we make? If we confess
        30
It was the Christ, we shall be driven forth
Out of the Synagogue! We know, Rabboni,
This is our son, and that he was born blind;
But by what means he seeth, we know not,
Or who his eyes hath opened, we know not.        35
He is of age; ask him; we cannot say;
He shall speak for himself.

PHARISEES.
                        Give God the praise!
We know the man that healed thee is a sinner!
 
THE BEGGAR.
Whether He be a sinner, I know not;
One thing I know; that whereas I was blind,        40
I now do see.

PHARISEES.
                How opened he thine eyes?
What did he do?

THE BEGGAR.
                    I have already told you.
Ye did not hear: why would ye hear again?
Will ye be his disciples?

PHARISEES.
                            God of Moses!
Are we demoniacs, are we halt or blind,        45
Or palsy-stricken, or lepers, or the like,
That we should join the Synagogue of Satan,
And follow jugglers? Thou art his disciple,
But we are disciples of Moses; and we know
That God spake unto Moses; but this fellow,        50
We know not whence he is!

THE BEGGAR.
                            Why, herein is
A marvellous thing! Ye know not whence He is,
Yet He hath opened mine eyes! We know that God
Heareth not sinners; but if any man
Doeth God’s will, and is his worshipper,        55
Him doth He hear. Oh, since the world began
It was not heard that any man hath opened
The eyes of one that was born blind. If He
Were not of God, surely He could do nothing!
 
PHARISEES.
Thou, who wast altogether born in sins
        60
And in iniquities, dost thou teach us?
Away with thee out of the holy places,
Thou reprobate, thou beggar, thou blasphemer!
THE BEGGAR is cast out.
 
 
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