Poem: The People
(Written in 1600)
“The people is a beast of muddy brain,
That knows not its own strength and therefore stands
Loaded with wood and iron. The powerless hands
Of a mere child guide it with bit and rein;
One kick would be enough to break the chain.
But the beast fears, and what the child demands
It does, nor its own terror understands
Confused and stupefied by bugbears vain.
Most wonderful! With its own hands
It ties the gags itself, gives itself life and war,
For pence doled out by kings from its own store.
Its own are all things between earth and heaven;
But this it knows not, and if one arise
To tell this truth, it kills him unforgiven.”
– Father Campanella.