Every spirit praise (no drum or choir)

I heard a Pope cry out for the Earth
with a clarion denied
by those who hang carcasses on every canon

He declared that all the creatures of the earth
crushed by footprint and glyphosate
will rise to the seat of Christ
but no eyes rose from the platters
teeming with martyrs

He mingled the cry of the earth with the cry of the poor
and called out the rupture that is sin
but no one stood in assembly with the parched fields
or their first victims

He embraced reason to justify faith
but neither was aired in the plaudits issuing from dim sanctuaries

He wept for the fish slipping through the hands
of those called to fish for men
but they returned to their violation of the sea

He took on the robots of earthly destruction
but could not disarm the robots of the palsied mind

And he asked for a dialog with God
but witnessed only the disappearance of a consciousness
that could reply

Dated May 24, 2015, and released June 18, 2015, the encyclical letter Laudato si’ expressed Pope Francis’s plea for humanity to save humanity and the world from the devastation of climate change. The encyclical was generally ignored.


This poem was published in issue 187 of the Arlington Literary Journal, October 15, 2023.

Andy Oram
May 25, 2020

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