Table of Contents

Arthur Peterson
  1. Tanned Virgin Hide
  2. Message In a Bottle
  3. Information on Bro. Peterson

This piece is extraordinary. The tone is exactly what is needed throughout the Craft. Lately I have had to focus my activities around programs of Grand Lodge, the pragmatic issues of money and the difficult issues of personalities and their interaction. This poem came at an important moment and helps focus what we all came here to do. I am about to start another round of district meetings around the state and this poem will help center those meetings. Bro. Peterson indicated that this is his first Masonic poem – let's hope it is not his last!

Tanned Virgin Hide

The truth of the apron, which we wear with great pride
Is not found on the surface of this tanned virgin hide.
It can not be taught by words printed or spoken,
Nor can it be passed like many a token.

This badge of a Mason must be put to the test
From the day it’s presented to the day that we rest,
And when slips from our hands the tools of our trade
The apron will tell all the progress we’ve made.

Will it be sullied by our words or our deeds,
Or maybe be ragged from unscrupulous creeds?
Our hope should be when we’re laid in the ground
That our apron remained, as pure as when found.

The truth of the apron which we wear with great pride,
In the end,
Is found on the surface of this tanned virgin hide.

Dec., 2006

Message In a Bottle

There’s a message in a bottle for
All the world to see. Just take
The time to look inside and
There the words’ll be. It
May read of many
Years to come
But then it
May just
Read a
A time
And read
The lines and
When you go to
Pray, thank a brother
Who like any other came
In your time of need, not for
A coin or worldly greed, but for
The love in his heart for Masonry.

Jan. 3, 2007

Brother Arthur Peterson

New River Lodge #736,
Jacksonville, NC.