Page:Mistral - Mirèio. A Provençal poem.djvu/132

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106
[Canto V.
MIRÈIO.

"The good work or the act of faith to cull.
And when of such as these their hands are full,
Lo, they all turn to flowers"! And they who gather
Go tender them with joy to God the Father,
Being by the flowers to Peter's gate conveyed.
Thus those who find a watery grave," he said,

"The gracious God granteth a respite to,
That they may save themselves. But some enew
Ere the day dawn will bury their good deeds
Deep underneath the surging river-weeds.
And some," the pilot whispered,—"some are worse,
Devourers of the needy, murderers,

"Atheists, traitors, that worm-eaten kind.
These hunt the river-shore, but only find
Their sins and crimes like great stones in the gravel
Whereon their bare feet stumble as they travel.
The mule when dead is beaten never more;
But these God's mercy shall in vain implore

"Under the roaring wave." Here, sore afraid,
Ourrias a hand upon the pilot laid,
Like robber at a turning. "Look!" he cries,
"There 's water in the hold!" Whereon replies
The pliot, coolly, "And the bucket's there!"
The herdsman bales for life in his despair.