Exit God

Original Text: 
Gamaliel Bradford, Shadow Verses (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1920): 80. PS 3503 R2S5 Robarts Library
1Of old our father's God was real,
2    Something they almost saw,
3Which kept them to a stern ideal
4    And scourged them into awe.
5They walked the narrow path of right
6    Most vigilantly well,
7Because they feared eternal night
8    And boiling depths of hell.
9Now Hell has wholly boiled away
10    And God become a shade.
11There is no place for Him to stay
12    In all the world He made.
14    Still let the Lord exist,
15And call Him by imposing names,
16    A venerable list.
17But nerve and muscle only count,
18    Gray matter of the brain,
19And an astonishing amount
20    Of inconvenient pain.
21I sometimes wish that God were back
22    In this dark world and wide;
23For though some virtues He might lack,
24    He had His pleasant side.


13] William James: American philosopher and psychologist (1842-1910) and author of Varieties of Religious Experience (1902). Back to Line
Publication Start Year: 
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: