Elegy for the last tree

I dream of waterfalls, of rivers and of rain
I dream of childhood and my past
I dream of rinsing clouds to ease my pain
I dream in green and sleep to last

Waked I meet the sun, the heat,
the burning wind, the hounds of drought
with razor jaws, the scent of wasted meat
the blowflies, but of vapor — naught.

From greed came gravel, sand and ash
From gluttony starvation and from pride came death
You never asked the trees instead you searched for cash
Now, your world is dying breath by breath.

I dreamed of waterfalls …

© Jan Wayne Fields

This is another poem in my quest for 30 poems in April, for Friday Fictioneers also linking to toads with Rommy for the seven vices.

It’s intense and right now and might take me a bit of time to get back to you…

81 responses to “Elegy for the last tree

  1. We do this .. either intentionally or unintentionally .. end up destroying our world. Potent write!

  2. A most beautiful poem! And most poignant. My Grandma used to express the opinion that greed was the worst sin, in its consequences. That was 50-odd years ago, and I have not yet seen any reason to disagree with her.

  3. The shift in tense from dream to dreamed, it’s a subtle but strong statement that even hope can be devoured by the rapaciousness of humanity.

  4. Tortuous… beautiful and so very sad. You did a marvellous job, Björn. We have treated Mother Earth with such disrespect…

  5. Wonderful. Really enjoyed your take here. I too am on a quest for 26 poems for this month. Lagging behind a bit but would love your input on them.

  6. What a wonderful eco poem, Bjorn! I especially love the lines:
    ‘I dream of rinsing clouds to ease my pain
    I dream in green and sleep to last’
    I will continue to talk to the trees – they may have an answer.

  7. The problem with saying it’s too late is that it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. In fact, it’s not too late, but it requires constant day to day action, lobbying, living as ecologically soundly as we can.
    It’s a great polemic poem, though, and I think you’re spot on identifying greed as the biggest driver of ecological damage.

  8. there’s a limit to how much we can damage nature. when comes the time it can’t tolerate the abuse any longer, it’ll renew itself at our expense.

  9. Love the social consciousness in this one! What will be when we have murdered all the trees and forgot what our ancestors taught that for every one you use, plant two to replace. greed,indeed.

  10. Such a wonderful point of view. The comparison between the lush past and parched present is so stark. Beautifully expressed, if depressing.

  11. Beautiful writing, every word, every line. And so, so sad. It reminded me of the death of Sudan, the last male northern white rhinoceros.

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