The New Bigot by C.J. Dennis

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Commenting on the concern expressed recently by certain churchmen over the modern growth of a cheap atheism and religious indifference, a leader writer remarks that, while the great scientists are never amongst the scoffers, the tendency of the shallow thinkers always is to win others over to his own easy unbelief.

He knows it all.  He makes no truce with doubt,
   No compromise with "Mayhap" or "Perchance";
Doctor and saint he is prepared to flout
   With all the dull-wit's easy arrogance.
Because some stray breeze struck his fragile barque,
It drifts, uncaptained, to the outer dark.

Some single book he read, some talk he heard
   Moves him to fling "old-fashioned" faiths behind,
To deem age-old philosophies absurd
   In the deep prescience of his "modern" mind,
He knows it all.  Not thro' long, labored thought;
But that his pansophy is cheaply bought.

So, knowing all and being deeply wise,
   Snatched, thro' his sapience, from an ancient "blight,"
His urge is ever to proselytise
   And bring his poor, blind brother to the light.
And ne'er did bigotry of long ago
Hurl bitterer taunts at that it would not know.

He is his own queer god, untrammelled, free,
   And on old "slaveries," with curious hate,
He heaps the mock-heroic blasphemy
   Of every twopenny sophisticate;
Failing, for all his prescience, to perceive
Blasphemy stultified lest one believe.

He knows it all . . . So, knowing all, speaks loud,
   He owns no fettering fears, no faith, no soul;
Before no altar is his proud head bowed;
   But, as about him universes roll --
Vast universes, infinite, remote,
   Heedless of this poor atom of the sod --
The challenge dying in his puny throat,
He gibbers, impotent: "There is no God!"

First published in The Herald, 10 June 1933

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on June 10, 2013 9:39 AM.

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