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Saturday, April 04, 2020


by Martin Willitts Jr 

A white female giraffe, thought to the last of its kind in the world, has been killed by poachers, conservationists in Kenya have announced. The rare giraffes were discovered in 2016. Independent (UK), March 11, 2020

It has come to this:
everything wrong
is someone else’s mistake.

We need to resolve whatever we can.
We cannot let the world get set so far back
it appears intractable, beyond re-setting.

You have to be sensitive to have common sense.

Already, the polar ice caps have retreated,
exposing bare rock. We should have suspected
negative consequences when we tracked the dodo
into non-existence. Once, the sky was blackened
by carrier pigeons, and forest were crowded
out the light. Once, we practiced the love
we preached and summoned our decency.

Everything has led to this:

we consider it a triumph
if we live through each day.
We’ve turned the corner, turned our backs
when Adam and Eve cast out of Eden
never glanced back, learning why bother
preserving what you can’t ever keep.

Martin Willitts Jr has 24 chapbooks including the Turtle Island Quarterly Editor’s Choice Award-winning The Wire Fence Holding Back the World (Flowstone Press, 2017), plus 16 full-length collections including the 2019 Blue Light Award-winning The Temporary World. His recent book is Unfolding Towards Love (Wipf and Stock).