Friday, August 23, 2019

Four poems for Rita Wong


A handwritten appeal: one shows respect
by speaking honestly. The landscape

is losing patience. My faith
erodes. Your words

are incremental: liquid, ghosts, pure
resilience. This natural history

of the senses.

Lithosphere: this fabric of muscle, bone;
of bodies, maps,

geopolitical collage.


As Dionne Brand wrote: a harmolodic
for the bruised planet. This path of centuries,

an attention

and respect. Deforestation, reigns. A tool
sits coolly in the earth: misplaced,

interred by time, and silt,

ten thousand lunar cycles. How can we live
if all else dies?


They can’t take it with them,
I guess. The world’s lungs

fill up with smoke.


The contempt

is obvious. You resist, for ecological health
and mutual respect, and in response, they place you

in a cold, dark room.

Injunctions, plead. Prompt: once more
unto the breach, my friend, once more.

Or close up the wall with our earthly dead.

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