Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Red Fox


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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.
So sweet.

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. 


  1. Well done in using three of the offered lines - and so compelling.

  2. Oh I love to see you at dVerse... I have kept myself here for quite some time. I love how you weaved several of the lines into the different stanzas on how we are destroying our world... I still want to be optimistic (but I guess nothing will happen until we realize we are killing ourselves)

    1. I havent been writing much , Bjorn - too much on my mind. But I can never resist a prompt about the wild. Smiles.

  3. Your passionate earth messages always capture me, Sherry. Would that the world would hear as well.

  4. Ah, Sherry, so good to see you here. I could have written this prompt just for you, I think! I love the way you used the lines - your passion burns in this poem. I love the moment of gentleness with the doe - the reason for that passion.

  5. Yes, I couldnt resist! Thanks for the inspiration!

  6. A wonderful call and response.

  7. I love how you gathered all the prompts together like hen and her chicks and teach us all from what is found there! Well done.

  8. Nicely done, and I especially like how you wove several of the phrases together into one poem.

  9. This is a good piece Sherry. The third verse raised my ire while the fourth verse made me cheer. We humans need to learn that we need to cooperate and be in balance with the earth as well as with each other. Well written here.

  10. I love what you've done here, Sherry, weaving several different lines into the poem, describing the animals 'all shivering in fear
    of the Mighty Two-Leggeds'
    and with good reason, I think. And yet there is hope, too:
    'a more just
    and sustainable world,
    (which can be ours, if we choose,)'
    Just like John Lennon said, 'War is over/if you want it.' So we could end this drain on Earth's resources, if we want it enough.

  11. I love how you use the fox as a way to open up the thoughts and knowledge

  12. This poem is a definite call to attention.

  13. My goodness this is good!💝 I especially love; "They say only the south wind flattens the grass, yet I found a circle of bent-over yellow fronds in the field." You rocked the prompt, Sherry!

  14. I love these ideals...though not the way they've been exploited. "Pragmatic" D's may make changes that are tough on individual citizens. They do not make changes that are actually sustainable. Their plan is to keep the population exploding and make it *less* sustainable by herding more people into apartment blocks, ceding more land to Monsanto-Microsoft-Bayer, getting more toxic "food" and less clean food into the food supply, every year. Exactly the same as R's, though the R's tend to be more honest about it and thus, paradoxically, a tiny bit more influenceable.

    I'm a True Green in the US and although I'm sure I'd have liked to know the Obamas more than the Trumps, the Obama Administration crowded my sustainable lifestyle more than the Trump Administration did.

    Preferences for one approach or another may be hard-wired so I don't expect to convert any readers here...just to explain how disagreement coexists with empathy, sympathy, and support.

  15. I had the same thought as you about the polar bear. It hurts, doesn't it? You kicked us hard with this one. Great poem.

  16. i'm reminded of the lyrics from that Talking Heads song: "goes on, and the beat goes on" ~


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