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Earnest and honest, a man at need
To burn like a torch for his own harsh creed,
He kept with the flaming brand of his zeal
The gate of the holy common weal.
His brow was clouded, his eye was stern,
With a look of mingled sorrow and wrath;
‘Woe's me!’ he murmured: “at every turn
The pestilent Quakers are in my path!
Some we have scourged, and banished some,
Some banged, more doomed, and still they come,
Fast as the tide of yon bay sets in,
Sowing their heresy's seed of sin.
Did we count on this? Did we leave behind
The graves of our kin, the comfort and ease
Of our English hearths and homes, to find
Troublers of Israel such as these?
Shall I spare? Shall I pity them? God forbid!
I will do as the prophet to Agag did:
They come to poison the wells of the Word,
I will hew them in pieces before the Lord! “
The door swung open, and Rawson the clerk
Entered, and whispered under breath,
“There waits below for the hangman's work
A fellow banished on pain of death—
Shattuck, of Salem, unhealed of the whip,
Brought over in Master Goldsmith's ship
At anchor here in a Christian port,
With freight of the devil and all his sort!”
Twice and thrice on the chamber floor
Striding fiercely from wall to wall,
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