LAUD TO POPE JOHN PAUL II
First published in ‟Who's Who in New Poets”
New York: Who's Who in New Poets,1996)
I laud you for most of the other moral systems detecting
And for anything true and holy in them not rejecting –
Those Asian Buddhist, Confucian, and Taoist religions,
And Australian hundreds-of-centuries-old native traditions.
I praise you for admitting your predecessors misapprehended
The earth’s form and position for which Galileo contended.
To deny the roundness and movement of the globe, in error
The Inquisition persecuted the physicist, inflicted terror!
I eulogize you for acknowledging that, without lenience,
In order to liberate Jerusalem from Islamic obedience,
They fostered crusades in the European Catholics’ name,
But they had recourse to violence – unworthy of fame!
I admire you for apologizing, to many a Latin nation,
For Spanish past roles in South-American Evangelization.
Delegated by the Church, Spain took advantage of the situation
To practice cruelly massacre, tyranny, and exploitation!
I adore you for testifying your anterior ones’ lack of sanity
While love of one another is the Bible’s thesis of humanity.
They considered the black-skinned as of lowest grade;
And they tolerated, and even encouraged, slave trade!
I sympathize with your feeling about World War II a sharp pain:
The Vatican’s cooperation with the Nazis – a dark stain!
I acclaim your recognition of the processes of Evolution:
Such reasoning beyond Creation is quite a revolution!
I extol you for rectifying the doctrine of the Virgin Mary:
Whether body and soul into heavenly victory it does vary.
To inherit sin – before that conception – she was bound;
To exclude her from natural death, there is no ground.
I glorify you for valiantly using your excellent brain as the key
To unlock the Truth so that the Truth will set everybody free
By affirming that there really is neither paradise, nor hell –
That creed unfortunately only binds believers under a spell.
I comprehend your part in seeking Poland᾽s regime to replace:
Because you are a Pole first and above any other race*.
I agree with you that though you tell people not to fear,
You must still use bulletproof protection in public to appear.
I love your getting prepared for the century twenty-first:
All predictions of the ‟near end” only mean a frenzy burst!
I’m sorry for you yielding to the Vietnamese protestation
Of their own country’s prelacy against your ordination!
I thank you for teaching Christians to repent of their sin
Committed in the past by certain Pontiffs and their kin.
Such lucidity, justice, and courage, of a man unmalleable
Lets me and others believe that you, the Pope, is infallible.
*The Pope made his first visit to Poland his native country in 1979.
Thanh-Thanh, as Nhuan Xuan Le, the Republic of Viet-Nam's CIA-supported high-ranking intelligence official, had already started his activities against the Polish (and Hungarian) communists since 1973-1975, succeeding in recruiting many Polish (and Hungarian) members of the ICCS (International Commission of Control and Supervision) to work for the CIA within their communist parties, governments and armed forces, facilitating the democratization operations afterwards.
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