Behold, you stern oppressors! I am not
Your slave, nor am I shaken by your threats,
Thunderings, thrusts of scorn and bitter shot.
I have, my poor depressors, no regrets
At abandoning your petty face;
Expect me next with golden mace
To send you forth as lictors to my rule
That once subjected me – ‘such is my lot’ –
To be to wooden tools myself a tool.
For what the law sets Adam to fulfil,
Thereto he’s meant to master all his tools:
As nature’s sovereign Lord has fixed his will,
His gracious fire will not suffer fools,
But all their images are burned
That stand to block what faith discerned,
And embers purify their lips with truth
Till finally they have no ink to spill
But wine that gushes from the fount of youth.