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W. Garrett Horder, comp. The Poets’ Bible: New Testament. 1895.

The Tears of Peter

Thomas Toke Lynch (1818–1871)

WHAT tears are these that flow so fast?

The cock hath crowed for coming dawn,

Twice hath he crowed, the night hath past;

With new day let new hope be born.

It was the Lord at cock-crow came;

Like Moses’ rod with double stroke,

A voice smote Simon in his shame;

Christ looked,—the strong man’s heart was broke.

He weeps, and bitter are his tears,

As bitter as his words are base,

As urgent as the sudden fears

Which even love refused to face.

O, love so false and yet so true,

O, love so eager yet so weak,

In these sad waters born anew

Thy tongue shall yet in triumph speak.

Thou livest, and the boaster dies,

Dies with the night that wrought his shame;

Thou livest, and these tears baptise—

Simon, now Peter is thy name.

A rock, upon Himself the Rock

Christ places thee this awful day;

Him waves assault with direful shock,

And cover thee with maddening spray.

But safe art thou, for strong is He!

Eternal Love all love will keep:

The sweet shall as the bitter be;

Thou shalt rejoice as thou dost weep.