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Thursday, February 05, 2015


by Howard Winn

“January 2015- BC’s War on Wolves continues: As you read this, wolves in British Columbia, Canada are being shot at by hunters in helicopters. This is an ill-conceived plan to save endangered caribou in B.C.. The wolves are not responsible for the dwindling caribou numbers; habitat loss and human encroachment are. But wolves are taking the blame and paying the price. B.C. Wolves Need Your Help: Consider donating to our Indiegogo Campaign. Sign the Save B.C. Wolves petition.”

I cannot save
them all
the wolves and walruses
the manatee and elephants
the white rhino and
the mountain gorilla
not to mention the cod
and the tarpon
of course we have
already lost the
passenger pigeon
so nothing to do there
but perhaps we
can save the redwoods
although they are
unlikely to personally care
as with the need to save
the Colorado River
and the Amazon rain
forest which is being
clear cut for agriculture
so we have to save
the indigenous people
who live in the woods
and the song birds that
are the tiny relics
of the extinct dinosaurs
so much to save and
I cannot finish the list
if only I were a heartless
sociopath without empathy
or a care in the universe
beyond my selfish self
like the Ayn Rand disciples
one could be oblivious
and blissful in the face
of obvious total extermination
as the earth we know
turns into Mars, Pluto, or Ceres.

Howard Winn’s poetry and fiction has appeared in a number of literary journals such as The Pennsylvania Literary Journal, Dalhousie Review, Antigonish Review, Chaffin Journal, Blueline, and Sediments Literary Arts Journal. He is a State of New York University Professor of English.