Nonfiction > Upton Sinclair, ed. > The Cry for Justice

Upton Sinclair, ed. (1878–1968).
The Cry for Justice: An Anthology of the Literature of Social Protest.  1915.
To a Certain Rich Young Ruler

By Clement Wood

(American poet, 1888–1950. A sonnet which was widely circulated at the time of the Colorado coal-strike of 1913–14)
WHITE-FINGERED lord of murderous events,
  Well are you guarding what your father gained;
  With torch and rifle you have well maintained
The lot to which a heavenly providence
Has called you; laborers, risen in defense        5
  Of liberty and life, lie charred and brained
  About your mines, whose gutted hills are stained
With slaughter of these newer innocents.
Ah, but your bloody fingers clenched in prayer!
  Your piety, which all the world has seen!        10
The godly odor spreading through the air
  From your efficient charity machine!
Thus you rehearse for your high rôle up there,
  Ruling beside the lowly Nazarene!

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