Ceres in the Mass Extinction
Nature is declining globally at rates unprecedented in human history—and the rate of species extinctions is accelerating, with grave impacts on people around the world now likely
-UN Report from Paris, May 6, 2019
I’d like to say we would’ve fought a war
if that had happened here, but the truth
is we, too, wove lies with our looms
and called it breaking news. Those random apostrophes in grammar—
everything is possessive. Everything belongs to someone else
but no one wants to pay.
The answer to how could you? will never come, so I learned to stop asking.
Some people want to suck
out their own contagion and cast it onto corpse
flowers, wild rice, and the star-shaped heads
of Georgia Aster—a bridesmaid blue
that perfumes shaded edges and rights-of-way.
Cast it onto dark-eyed porpoises shy deer with solitary horns
redfish and rockfish the one they consider a good friend.
It doesn’t make sense and now I feel a particular kind of pain:
you hurt me
to prove how consuming yours became.
How does it help me to say you love me still?
Earth folds over herself like punched and fermented dough.
Look at your pain now.
Gone are the fluorescent amphibians. Gone is the Large White butterfly
its wings a lucent invitation you won’t ever receive.
Gone are the muscular cats from your wall art
and the rasped sonata in high fields.
Gone are the coral reefs, hot colors blinking out each death a porch light
we won’t drink under anymore. Even sand disappears
the way I do as you draw
what you need from me then flick off your brain:
not here enough to be the same not gone enough for you to care.