God’s regents here on earth were meant to guide the trusting flock,
To read to them, interpret any passage deemed abstruse,
To help them to obey, not to stray, to emulate the rock,
To study, to investigate, elucidate the truth.
For centuries they carried out their mission with a zeal
That sometimes turned to tyranny, the good work sabotaged.
Yet the faithful clung to their interpretations and authority,
A free pass for the charlatans and greedy demagogues.
The fatal error in every age that left them dispossessed
Was to oppress the Promised Ones, the Messiah, the Qá’im.
What need is there for stars when with daylight we are blessed?
All those professing radiance must revolve around the Sun.
They committed yet another gaffe that rent the skies asunder.
Their lambasting of the learned guaranteed their own descent.
As Bruno burned, they circled round, oblivious of their blunder.
Their own inviolate robes caught fire, their rule reduced to embers.
They feared the Blessed Beauty, His majesty and power.
Thus they sent their emissaries, demanding that He demonstrate
A miracle. He said, ‘but once performed, all must avow.’
They crumbled at the likelihood of having to capitulate.
A mob, incited by the clergy, circled round His house
With bad intentions, daring Him come out in self-defense.
So He beckoned them to enter, and then He served them tea.
Humbled and subdued, they left with heads inclined in deference.
With long white beard and turban like a boa wrapped around his head,
A noted cleric came to call, spouting arcane verse in Arabic without a flaw.
When asked to introduce himself he gathered up his gall and said:
‘Of all ecclesiastics, I am the ultimate.’
Bahá’u’lláh responded, ‘Inshá’alláh, inshá’alláh.’6