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W. Garrett Horder, comp. The Poets’ Bible: New Testament. 1895.

“How didst thou start, Thou Holy Baptist”

John Henry Newman (1801–1890)

‘I have need to be baptized of Thee, and comest Thou to me.’—MATT. III. 14.

HOW didst thou start, Thou Holy Baptist, bid

To pour repentance on the Sinless Brow!

Then all thy meekness, from thy hearers hid,

Beneath the Ascetic’s port, and Preacher’s fire;

Flow’d forth, and with a pang thou didst desire,

He might be chief, not thou.

And so on us at whiles it falls, to claim

Powers that we dread, or dare some forward part;

Nor must we shrink as cravens from the blame

Of pride, in common eyes, or purpose deep;

But with pure thoughts look up to God, and keep

Our secret in our heart.