a moment to reflect

we took the courses
which taught us how to
farm organically
be responsible
we practised permaculture
crop rotation
aquaponics, biodiversity
we sowed and seeded
planted, weeded
fed and watered
set our stores against the possible
apocalyptic eventualities
nuclear meltdowns
social breakdowns
stormy seas and changing seasons
from Humboldt to the Appalachians
from Goa to the Scottish Highlands
we grew our trees for fuel and fruit
hens for eggs
goats for milk
tanks collecting drops of rain
compost toilets, healthy grains
solar panels on our roofs
everything was future proofed
or so we thought and meant to be
yet we hadn’t accounted for or seen
the true predictability of man
when the shit began to hit the fan
how the hungry townsfolk would quickly come
to yank our veg from out the ground
to turn our livestock into dead
to fell our trees and steal our eggs
we would have shared
but did they care?
they never asked
just grabbed and yelled
having never taken time to listen
to our alternative ‘hippy’ views
on what would surely happen
if we didn’t change our attitudes
on how we lived
how we behaved
love and peace and leave no trace
and now we all have nothing left
nothing left to tend or gift
no seeds for next year’s crop
this date in time our final stop
no food on shelves
nowhere to shop
the world will be a hungry place
no longer fit for the human race
just desserts as some might say
but sad for those who tried to change
the course of destiny set in motion
by greed and wars and desperation
to be the richest at all costs
to own the most
to be the tops
well goodnight and good luck
you really didn’t give a fuck
we did what we could do
and now it’s really up to you
to feed yourselves on dollar bills
shiny toys and empty grills
that in your wasteful haste
to keep apace and not lose face
you hoarded in great quantities
leaving bitter oily aftertastes
your children’s bellies will distend
their stomach’s ache until the end
just like those African kids you ignored
on news bulletins in the days before
we realised something was amiss
upon this planet we made our own
not even looking back from outer space
could make us think
could make us take a moment
to reflect upon this rock
our one and only home

three girls on the bridge

the three girls on the bridge
toss their wishes into the river
and just as pebbles would make ripples
so their wishes dissipate and float away

unlike the linden trees on the bank
they are not rooted in their surroundings
in a sudden they will have flown
their wishes sunk or saved in the current

shadows of mayflies follow in their wake
and the bridge will see many more visitors
its wooden slats are ancient and worn
with gaps that swallow stray thoughts

if you stand here next to your lover
remember the three girls and their wishes
for time and tide carried them away
the sea of humanity waiting

 

picture a window

picture a window
sometime in the future
a man looking through it
an oak tree in the distance
there are birds in the branches
clear skies all around
and there in the foreground
a shepherdess standing
her flock happily grazing
it’s the man she has seen
behind his window frame
sometime in the future
when all things have changed

(to read more in this series please click on the Shepherdess tag below)