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Sunday, April 01, 2018


by Howard Winn

Easter Island is critically vulnerable to rising ocean levels. . . . Many of the moai statues and nearly all of the ahu, the platforms that in many cases also serve as tombs for the dead, ring the island. With some climate models predicting that sea levels will rise by five to six feet by 2100, residents and scientists fear that storms and waves now pose a threat like never before. “You feel an impotency in this, to not be able to protect the bones of your own ancestors,” said Camilo Rapu, the head of Ma’u Henua, the indigenous organization that controls Rapa Nui National Park, which covers most of the island, and its archaeological sites. “It hurts immensely.” —Nicholas, Casey, The New York Times, March 15, 2018

Discovered by the western world
on that religious holiday
although the residents of
the island knew it was there
at the end of long canoe trips
some thought the huge heads
could only be the work of beings
from other planets not of this
world until inquisitive explorers
found the remnants of unfinished
heads and now as the seas rise
despite the anti-science deniers
and the islands sink beaches
disappear and vacations to
swim with warm sand under
foot are no longer what the
adventurous wealthy can
indulge in as trees vanish
and Pacific waters wash over
farm lands and orchards of
tropical fruit while history
and inexplicable stone heads
vanish into the southern seas
to remain only for a time in
memory or in history books
the fate of things in a world
of times past and legend
takes the place of scientific fact

Howard Winn has just had a novel Acropolis published by Propertius Press as well as poems in the Pennsylvania Literary Journal and in Evening Street Magazine.