Look, look, master, here comes two religious caterpillars. The Jew of Malta. Polyphiloprogenitive The sapient sutlers of the Lord Drift across the window-panes. In the beginning was the Word. In the beginning was the Word. Superfetation of [Greek text inserted here], And at the mensual turn of time Produced enervate Origen. A painter of the Umbrian school Designed upon a gesso ground The nimbus of the Baptized God. The wilderness is cracked and browned But through the water pale and thin Still shine the unoffending feet And there above the painter set The Father and the Paraclete. . . . . . The sable presbyters approach The avenue of penitence; The young are red and pustular Clutching piaculative pence. Under the penitential gates Sustained by staring Seraphim Where the souls of the devout Burn invisible and dim. Along the garden-wall the bees With hairy bellies pass between The staminate and pistilate, Blest office of the epicene. Sweeney shifts from ham to ham Stirring the water in his bath. The masters of the subtle schools Are controversial, polymath.
Return to the T.S. Eliot library , or . . . Read the next poem; Portrait of a Lady