“Blindnes is a scourge!”,
Fred Hollows bellowed in Eritrea.
He was in a right rage
Because eight thousand go blind in a year!
Who was this man, pray thee?
Who was this man of vision,
Who thought he could make the blind see?!
Was he mad or was he illuminated by compassion?
He started his work at home;
At Amata and Kalgoorlie, he toiled with dedication
To eradicate blindness or at least, some!
His was an unswerving battle to better the human condition.
Glaucoma ravaged the Australian Indigenous and stilll does;
It and trachoma were threatened by Prof. Hollows.
He organised the Trachoma and Eye Health Program…ingenious
And helped establish the Aboriginal Health Services.
His world-wide perspective and overriding concern
Was the disparity between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have-nots’.
With a curious blend of authority and compassion,
He boomed forth angrily and shook us out of the ruts!