The Sixth Mass Extinction, a poem


THE SIXTH MASS EXTINCTION

the ghosts of our parents search vainly
for wildflowers near the beach at Big Sur

they were deaf to the threat in thunder,
but we were struck by lightning,
heaved in the rain and waves and
the overflow from the melting ice

the computers went down
their screens black as the wicked water,
in whirling chaos they morphed into drums

every fetus turned in the womb,
the men went to the mountain tops
and the women sheltered in caves

the souls of saints and sinners
were run through a cosmic wash cycle
after the spin dry, a new wisdom

but the shades of our parents remain,
they wait in vain for us at Big Sur,
in vain by the Santa Lucia Mountains

“We tell our children they’re trapped like rats on a doomed, bankrupt, gangster-haunted planet with dwindling resources, with nothing to look forward to but rising sea levels and imminent mass extinctions, then raise a disapproving eyebrow when, in response, they dress in black, cut themselves with razors, starve themselves, gorge themselves, or kill one another.” Scottish comic book writer and playwright Grant Morrison, MBE (b. 1960)

© 2012, poem (old one/minor edits), Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved; Bill Nye poster courtesy of Climate Action Reserve

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5 Comments on “The Sixth Mass Extinction, a poem

  1. Love the “wash cycle” and “spin dry”…speed, automation, violent taking charge of natural processes evoked. Fits the hubris and the chaos we’re entrenched in.

    Liked by 1 person

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