A new story

Because for so long
They have gotten away with
Environmental mayhem
That has enriched them beyond
The dreams of kings
The slick, sleek, sartorial
Dukes and earls of capital
Ensconced in opulent board rooms
And sumptuous yachts and jets
Far from the madding crowd
Believe they can continue their depradations
Unabated and without consequence,
At least to themselves.
We know better.
The repercussions are piling up
And gathering momentum
Just over the horizon
Like a stupendous ecological tsunami
That will not bother to consult
The financial pages or Who’s Who
Before crashing down
On every ecosystem
From hither to yon
Leaving no one unaffected or unscathed
Even those with $1000 haircuts
Ski lodges in the Dolomites
Sixpacks of Bentleys.
But those sorry hedonists
Aren’t going to lift a finger
To save us from the catastrophes
That they have created and are sustaining
With their pathological greed and narcissism
So it’s up to the rest of us
To seize control of the unfolding narrative
Of planetary calamity
And rewrite the plot
To tell a new story
Of a little blue marble
Hurtling towards the abyss
But saved just as annihilation seems assured
By a worldwide coming together
Of all those who understand
How to thrive on an Earth
That always gives back to those
Who do not take too much
A message and a moral so obvious
So compellingly clear
That even those rendered ethically obtuse
By their oodles of oily loot
Should get the point.
.

Buff Whitman-Bradley's poems have appeared in many print and online journals. His most recent books are To Get Our Bearings in this Wheeling World, and Cancer Cantata. With his wife Cynthia, he produced the award-winning documentary film "Outside In," and with the MIRC film collective, made the film "Por Que Venimos." His interviews with soldiers refusing to fight in Iraq and Afghanistan were made into the book "About Face: Military Resisters Turn Against War." He lives in northern California. Read other articles by Buff.