Heinrich Heine's poem Disputation, from Jewish Stories and Hebrew Melodies, p. 138-140
In this section, the Christian friar has made his case and it is Rabbi Judah of Navarre's chance at a rebuttal.
"To manure the seed you're sowing
In my spirit's barren ground,
You load up your dung with insults
And spread barrelsful around.
"Everyone to his own method;
Each man does what he knows how;
I won't chide you for it – thank you,
I'm resigned to it by now.
"But this Trinitarian doctrine
Will not do at all, you see,
For a people who since childhood
Have dealt with the Rule of Three.
"That your Godhead has three persons,
And three only, is a claim
That is moderate: the ancients
Knew six thousand gods by name.
"I don't know this 'Christ' you talk of–
I suppose, some god or other;
Nor have I yet had the honor
To have known his Virgin Mother.
"That, twelve hundred years ago
In Jerusalem, he clearly
Had unpleasant tribulations–
I regret this most sincerely.
"That it was the Jews who killed him
Is a hard thing to say now
Since the corpus delicti vanished
Three days afterward somehow.
"Claims that he is some relation
To our own God can't be so,
For the latter has no children,
Far as any of us know.
"It was not our Lord who perished
Like your wretched Lamb of God
For humanity– he is no
"No, our God's not love incarnate,
Never bills and coos – no wonder,
For he is a God of vengeance
And he is a God of thunder.
"His stern lightning smites each sinner
And his wrath is grim and gruff;
And a father's guilt is paid for
By the children oft enough.
"Our God is a living God:
Up in Heaven's spaces, he
Lives in glory and will live on
All through far Eternity.
"Our God is a healthy God:
Not mere legend to affright us,
Thin as a communion wafer,
Pale as shadows on Cocytus.
"Strong is he. His hands keep planets,
Suns and stars upon their path;
Thrones are toppled, nations perish
When he knits his brow in wrath.
"And he is a mighty God.
David sang at his behest:
Never can his might be measured,
Earth's a footstool for his rest.
"Our God loves the sound of music,
Festal song and singing strings;
But it jars, like piglets grunting,
When an odious church bell rings.
Further argument yet remains! To be continued...