Tuesday, January 26, 2016


image from citiesetc.blogspot.com


“Do not go gentle into that good night--
rage, rage against the dying of the light.”
--Dylan Thomas.

It is interesting to note
       that Ecology is not synonymous with
              the environment. It is a human science,
                       a serious study of the interactions among
              organisms & their environment, an attempt
        to understand the human in humanity, & how
in just a few thousand years

we managed to ape Oedipus,
ravaging, raping, & polluting
our planetary mother.                      Just a century ago,
                                         the timber, oil, & steel industries
                                 were impervious to the harm they
                     did; just obsessed with the gargantuan
              profits they amassed while focusing only
         on the production of the goods & materials 
that were needed/demanded in order to provide,
                                                            to construct
                                                            to fuel
       a terrible Trojan Horse of progress.
                                 Wake up:

If politics were not practiced out of sheer greed,
if lobbyists were not allowed to buy politicians,
if science was not undermined by the teeming minions
       of close-minded superstitious zealots who practice
       the religions of the world,
if intellect was as attractive as fascist demagoguery,
if love could usurp hate, racism, intolerance & ignorance,
if common sense were more than a forgotten pamphlet
       written by a fiery-eyed Thomas Paine,

then maybe earth would stand a chance, rather than being
consumed & destroyed by the contagious carcinogens of
our own nature,
        maybe the innocent planet could side-step the eminent 
                       perils we continue to perpetuate;
        maybe it could actually heal itself, 
                       could flourish and blossom again,
                       could sustain life,
                       could stave off cumulating extinctions,
                       could reciprocate kindness with matriarchal
                       and maternal affection, & we 
                       could feel safe
                       once more in her arms.

But it sure as hell
does not look like that’s going
to happen tomorrow.

Glenn Buttkus


brudberg said...

Humans put themselves in the center all the time, though for nature humans are one of the few species that are have no natural place in the ecosystem... we are easily replaced by any other top predator... I wonder how our mother will try to get rid of us...

Sanaa Rizvi said...

The call for action is quite powerful in your verse :)

Victoria said...

Positioning the prose between the Dylan Thomas poetry and your final statement made for a quite powerful read.

Toni Spencer said...

The last stanza(?) and micro poem says it all. The best part of the whole poem and with the most impact. I like "innocent earth" very much and it fits well in this section. If you haven't, you may want to watch Day After Tomorrow. As faulty and pedantic as the movie is, the last scene is killer.

De said...

"rage against the dying of the light" sets this up so powerfully, Glenn.

Grace said...

The last part is a powerful call to heed nature's cries ~ On the positive side, I would like to believe in the healing powers of nature, to flourish and blossom again ~ But it would take a long long time, certainly not tomorrow ~

Anonymous said...

I especially like your "ifs"
well said!


I really like this part:
"in just a few thousand years

we managed to ape Oedipus,
ravaging, raping, & polluting
our planetary mother"

Also this:
"if intellect was as attractive as fascist demagoguery"

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Glenn, you have spoken the truth...?and we forget, when we're clearcut ting them, they also exhale the oxygen we breathe. Sigh.

Mary said...

No, Glenn, I am not optimistic either. We haven't had a very good track record so far. Sigh.

Delaina said...

"contagious carcinogens" such a powerful image. Great poem.

http://artifactsandfictions.com/2016/01/27/maybe-a-poem-maybe-not/ said...

Bravo. Your poem really tells it like it is and doesn't pull any punches. Very powerful stuff. Suzanne of Art and Life


P.S. I forgot to mention how much I enjoyed the accompanying artwork.

Bryan Ens said...

A lot in this. And you're right. Tomorrow isn't looking promising.

Bodhirose said...

I felt a comforting when you mentioned us being in the arms of our Mother again. Perhaps she's stronger than we give her credit for and she will persevere through whatever we puny humans can throw at her!

Kate Mia said...

As they say.. as above.. so below..
extended out to tools
of animals
human culture..
the largest
tool of
and sure there
are viruses smaller
than humans eyes
can see..
to kill
the largest
human so culture
is the virus
is the
host for now..
until it runs
out of host
the blood of more..
yes too.. inside
small kills big..:)

Kathy Reed said...

Well said, Glenn. It's hard to not get emotional when trying to convince those who don't seem to care, especially who have some power to do something, falls on deaf ears. So many good points here politicians need to heed. Everyone can pull together if they are called to do so, if the powers that be would only put together a plan on a world wide scope...modeled after the Conservation Corps or Peace Corp or Americorp. need it yesterday!! Hear hear for Thomas Paine!!

Kim M. Russell said...

Those three lines sum up the human race:
we managed to ape Oedipus,
ravaging, raping, & polluting
our planetary mother.

Anonymous said...

Humanity is a community addicted to energy and self satisfaction.

Georgina Wright said...

Very politically poetic and to the point. I love the way you structure this and build up to the part where we could undo the mess created. If there is hope it is in all the small organisations and bigger ones who are struggling so hard to help the survival of key species. And many religious groups are also now working more for protecting God's creation. So maybe there's a chance.

Sumana Roy said...

the reference to the classics makes the poem all the more powerful that points to the impending tragedy awaiting mankind...humans will not learn from the past...so sad...

grapeling said...

no, no it doesn't ~