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She said if a red fox had crossed somewhere,
that area was safe.
Safe for whom? Not foxes. Not wolves.
Not trees, all shivering in fear
of the Mighty Two-Leggeds.
They say only the south wind
flattens the grass,
yet I found a circle of bent-over yellow fronds
in the field, where a soft-eyed doe
and her fawn bedded down last night.
There is a story of when the ice detached
and the people floated away,
a polar bear's dream, as she swims,
in desperate hunger, increasing distances
in seas that once were solid underfoot.
We are teachers to our grandchildren,
and what are we teaching them now?
That everything is a resource, put here
just for us? That time is money;
that money rules? But "the spirit liberates,"
my stubborn optimism insists,
refusing to let go of a more just
and sustainable world,
(which can be ours, if we choose,)
willing it to come into the
consciousness and determination
of seven billion people and the leaders
who lead us - whether over a cliff, or,
at the very lip of disaster, who will
turn it around, legislate the tough changes,
so we can all start the hard work of healing
the sorrowing land.
for Sarah's cool prompt at dVerse: Travels in the Wild, a prompt I could not ignore. The italicized lines are taken from an essay about Alaska in the book Surfacing by Kathleen Jamie.