B.·. Walter K. Belt
The Past Master
1/08 An Invitation
1/08 A To Z
1/08 Six-Thirty Degree
Table of Contents
This one has been held back for some time from being added to our website because if was missing a line. But it's an otherwise fine poem, so I made up the missing line (17) to complete the poem, and here it is.
- So you've joined the Masons, Brother?
- That is fine, but there are other
- Worthwhile rites you ought to know
- Like advanced degrees at college.
- They give further light and knowledge
- You should go,
- First of all, and join the Chapter
- Added truths will make you apter,
- They will help your onward march
- If you want to find an answer,
- There is one way that you can sir.
- Join the Arch!
- If some doubt your poor mind wearies
- Are there answers to the queries
- In the things that you have heard?
- Does the wonder come unbidden:
- Do you crave to find the hidden
- Long-lost word?
- If you would the knot unravel,
- There's a way that you can travel,
- Through the desert winds may parch;
- So, in case you have a question,
- This will prove the best suggestion –
- Join the Arch.
The Royal Arch Mason – Fall 1973
I've seen this several times and Brother Chris Christianson suggested that it might be included. Anyone who is a Past Master and a Past District Deputy Grand Master certainly understands!
After languishing in our "anonymous" file for some time, the author of this poem has been identified. The final two lines of the anonymous version don't show up on those properly attributed to Belt, but they fit, so they remain.
The Past Master
- "Who's the stranger, Mother, dear?
- Look: he knows us — ain't that queer?"
- "Hush, my son, don't talk so wild,
- He's your father, dearest child."
- "He's my father? It's not so,
- Father died six years ago."
- "Dad didn't die, O child of mine,
- He's been going through the line.
- But he's been Master now so he
- Has no place to go you see —
- No place left for him to roam —
- That is why he's coming home,
- Kiss him — he won't bite you child.
- All Past Masters are quite mild."
Be ready with friendly greetings,
Reserve the night when we have meetings,
Obey the Master's pleas and wishes,
Take time to help out with the dishes,
Ease the lot of those with sickness,
Help widows, orphans, too, with quickness,
Remember to alway' love one another —
And you'll deserve the name of Brother.
A To Z
We should know every letter
In our Craft's alphabet;
And some of them are better
Than others are, and yet
Each one as an initial
Some phase of brotherhood
May show as beneficial,
And all of them are good,
If we would praise be earning,
We'll let our brothers see
We have sufficient learning
To go from A to Z.
Then let us all work harder,
Show how we really feel.
Yes, let us start with Ardor,
And let us end with Zeal.
You may have a skillful Master
Who presides with practiced ease,
Who arranges clever programs
That will entertain and please,
One who calls in witty speakers;
Who knows his way about;
But a lavish Junior Warden
Is the boy who brings them out!
You may have a good degree team
Where each member knows his part.
Drilled to function as a unit
With especial skill and art,
With the finest of equipment,
Jewelled crown and sumptuous shroud;
But a groaning banquet table
Is the bait that draws the crowd!
Did I say that I was different?
If the truth must be confessed,
Much as I like work and speeches,
I'm as hungry as the rest;
And the ones they put in pudding
Are my favorite kind of "Plumb";
When the cry is "Come and get it!"
Gangway, slowpokes, here I come!
from the Eastern Star News, Oct 15, 1940
Bro. Belt is the author of Poems on the Trestle-Board, poems on the many aspects of Freemasonry, published in 1965.