A new song here shall be begun--
The Lord God help our singing!--
Of what our God himself hath done,
Praise, honour to him bringing:
At Brussels in the Netherlands,
By two young boys, He gracious
Displays the wonders of his hands,
Giving them gifts right precious,
And richly them adorning.
The first right fitly John was named,
So rich he in God's favour;
His brother, Henry--one unblamed,
Whose salt had lost no savour.
From this world they are gone away,
The diadem they've gained!
Honest, like God's good children, they
For his word life disdained,
And have become his martyrs.
The ancient foe on them laid hold,
With terrors did enwrap them;
To lie against God's word them told,
With cunning would entrap them:
From Louvaine too, to see the game
And in his crust nets take them,
Many a sophist gathered came:
The Spirit fools did make them--
Their cunning could gain nothing.
Oh! they sung sweet, and they sung sour;
Oh! they tried every double;
The boys they stood firm as a tower,
And mocked the sophists' trouble.
The serpent old it filled with hate
To be thuswise defeated
By two such youngsters--he, so great!--
His wrath sevenfold was heated,
And he resolved to burn them.
Their cloister-garments off they tore,
Undid their consecrations;
All this the boys were ready for,
And said Amen with patience.
To God their Father they gave thanks
That they would soon be rescued
From Satan's scoffs and mumming pranks,
Whereby with false pretences
The world he so befooleth.
Then gracious God did grant to them
To pass true priesthood's border,
And offer up themselves to him,
Thus entering Christ's own order;
So to the world to die outright,
With falsehood make a schism;
And coming to heaven pure and white
Give monkery the besom,
And leave behind men's prattle.
They wrote for them a paper small:
At their request they read it;
They showed them every point there, all
To which themselves gave credit.
There was an error great indeed!
In God we should trust solely:
To cheat and lie, man maketh speed;
We should distrust him wholly:
For that they burn to ashes.
Two awful fires they kindled then,
The boys they carried to them;
Great wonder seizes every man
That with contempt they view them.
With joy themselves they yielded quite,
With singing and God-praising:
The sophists had small appetite
For these new things so dazing
Which God was thus revealing.
They now repent the deed of blame,
Would gladly gloze it over;
They dare not glory in their shame;
The facts almost they cover.
In their hearts gnaweth infamy--
They to their friends deplore it:
The Spirit cannot silent be;
Good Abel's blood out-poured
Must still old Cain discover!
To spread, their ashes will not cease;
Into all lands they scatter;
Stream, hole, ditch, grave will them release;
All winds shall tell the matter.
Them whom from life their murderous hand
Drove down to silence triple,
They hear them now in every land,
In tongues of every people,
Go about gladly singing.
Still their foul lies they will not leave,
But trim and dress the murther;
The fable false which out they give
Shows conscience grinds them further.
God's holy ones, even after death,
They still go on belying;
They say that with their latest breath
The boys, in act of dying,
Repented and recanted!
Let them lie on for evermore--
Nothing by that they're gaining;
For us, we thank our God therefore:
His word is yet remaining!
Even at the door is summer nigh,
The winter hard is ended,
The tender flowers come out to spy:
His hand when once extended
Stays not till it has finished. Amen.