Ambrose Bierce

(24 June 1842 - 26 December 1913 / Horse Cave Creek, Ohio)

A Welcome - Poem by Ambrose Bierce

Because you call yourself Knights Templar, and
There's neither Knight nor Temple in the land,
Because you thus by vain pretense degrade
To paltry purposes traditions grand,

Because to cheat the ignorant you say
The thing that's not, elated still to sway
The crass credulity of gaping fools
And women by fantastical display,

Because no sacred fires did ever warm
Your hearts, high knightly service to perform
A woman's breast or coffer of a man
The only citadel you dare to storm,

Because while railing still at lord and peer,
At pomp and fuss-and-feathers while you jeer,
Each member of your order tries to graft
A peacock's tail upon his barren rear,

Because that all these things are thus and so,
I bid you welcome to our city. Lo!
You're free to come, and free to stay, and free
As soon as it shall please you, sirs-to go.

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Poem Submitted: Monday, October 1, 2012

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