Stranger: What kind your people are I would wish to know: Round-shouldered men like rolling-stock Great in despair Simple in prayer And their hard hands tear The clay on the rock Where the plough cannot go? Poet: 'Tis not so Faint-hearted folk my people are To poverty's house they have never invited The giant Pride But await the world Where wrongs are righted. They till their fields and scrape among the stones Because they cannot be schoolmasters They work because Judge Want condemns the drones. Dear stranger duty is a joke Among my peasant folk. Stranger: Poet be fair You surely must have seen Beneath these rags of care Hearts that were not mean And cowardly and faint. Poet: Why O why Should poet seek to prove The spirit of a saint For one in love Would never probe or pry Into the mystery Of that is gods In the turning clods I cannot tell you what you ask But I shall tell you other things I shall fill the flask Of your curiosity with bitterings Stranger: I will go To my town back again And never desire to know The hearts of your women and men. Poet: Our women are humble as dust They eat the hard crust They suckle our children and we Drink the milk of high mystery. Stranger: I will go To my townful of vermin That sways to and fro Like fool heads at a sermon I will pour out for them Your vitriol of hell And may Christ condemn My soul if I tell The dream of your folk That arose as you spoke. § Line 25, 'O' is an insertion. Lines 30-32 are corrected from: 'Into the mysteried cove Where all that is gods Is safe from the hurtling clods.'