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A Pope Like No Other By Niyi Osundare

September 23, 2015

(Paean for Pope Francis)

He blazes through the clouds,

An angel with roots in our common earth

The sun envies the lyric of his light

The wind stays steady behind his voice



He did not come to rule the world

He did not come to judge.

Ear to the ground, eye on the mission

He came to enlarge the Empire of Virtue



Spontaneous like the dew

Generous like the river

He breaks bread with beggars

And drapes ragged times in Garments of Hope



Courage his shield, compassion his compass

He shows the Have-all their blood-stained trail

The capital crime in the Market with absent rules

The Greed in the Deal which corrupts our Need



He re-routes our vision to 

The toxic wound in the Eye of the Earth

That Hole in the Sky and its infernal fires

The puking ocean, the coughing mountain



Not for him the gilded Palace and its mimic mirrors.   

Loin firmly girded, staff a lightning rod

He beams his balm on our Places of Pain

Unfetters the Afflicted, the heavy-laden



Principle meets Purpose

And a stubborn union is born

A passionate Omoluabi* is high on the pulpit

Showing us all new ways of being HUMAN


*In Yoruba culture Omoluabi is a person with exemplary character.                                                  


                       Niyi  Osundare