Brebeuf, Ending

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I wonder what price

For this journey

From textbook

To strange tongue

Tall pine

From abbey

And penance

To portage

And comrades

All hardy in line.

The trek to

The New World

So dazzling

The ocean skies

Beckoning on

And red faces

Stare at our larder

And implements

Toted so long.

They sense

There is help

In this process

The prayers

Ministrations so new

The children

All laugh in the stories

While parents see

Snows to get through

While parents tend

Fields of the maize corn

And cut needful pelts

From wild friends

And murmer

Of enemies looming

Will our Jesus

Ably defend?

Then quickly

The arrows

And shrieking

The night sky

So vast

Turned bright red

And we to

The last rites

Committals

To honour

Huronia’s dead.

Tomorrow

The hostiles so numerous

Will this be

The price of it all?

The totem

And torture and taunting

The worst evidence

Of Man’s Fall?

Dear Father

I rest in your presence

A strange

Interlude in this war

Afford me

The calm and the courage

To bless you

As never before. (1649)

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