Wednesday, 2 December 2015


“What we are doing to the forests of the world is but a mirror reflection of what we are doing to ourselves and to one another.” - Chris Maser

This week Poets United has as its mid-week motif “Vitality-Energy”. This is perhaps quite apt as the vitality of our planet is being discussed yet again, this time in Paris…

The twenty-first session of the Conference of the Parties (COP) and the eleventh session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP) is taking place from 30 November to 11 December 2015, in Paris, France, under the auspices of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Another talkfest? Another congregation of politicians to spout forth platitudes as they quaff their champagne and eat their gourmet dinners at the gala functions? Another lot of scientists vying for Nobel prizes at whatever cost? And meanwhile ordinary people try to demonstrate around the world, aware that what is being done by governments and scientists is not enough.

My poem below:


The sun drips pure drops of golden energy
And forests green drink deep, slaking boundless thirst;
A wondrous transmutation in each viridian leaf
As chemistry’s vital soup mixes:
Radiant light, carbon dioxide and water,
To make a syrupy fluid sustaining life.

An endless cycle that for a billion years
Keeps all in balance, making our Earth a blue-green Eden;
Sunlight, heat, water, oxygen,
The molecules of life dancing tirelessly:
Sugars, proteins, fats, solids, liquids gases,
All in each cell admixed in right proportions.

And as we grow in numbers, and our pullulating masses
Consume, pollute, destroy, despoil and divest the earth;
A dismal transmutation in each and every place,
As human filth poisons air, sea, land, river and lake:
Lead, mercury, dioxin, DDT, sulphur dioxide, carbon dioxide,
To make of our Eden, a toxic greenhouse.

A hundred years or so, were enough for man
To throw the delicate balance off kilter;
Ozone depleted, carbon heavy, oxygen starved,
Our planet marches towards destruction:
Species extinct, great forests felled, ice melting,
Climate disrupted, our vitality sapped…

Too late to stop?
Too far gone to reverse?
Too few that care?
Too poisoned to recover?
Yes, if we rely on politicians on a Paris junket to act,
And not on each and every single one of us, doing what we must.


  1. You are so right, Nicholas. At least the conversation has begun to recognize the seriousness - though we are thirty or forty years late in waking up to this fact. Words words words while everything grinds along, unchanging, carbon emissions billowing into the air on every side. We must act individually but huge changes must come from the top as well - industry and corporate cattle farming being huge polluters. I am glad the people are marching everywhere.

  2. humans are so greedy and foolish that they will continue digging their grave and making headway towards that...ugh...a timely poem...

  3. "...human filth poisons" indeed. And as part of your last stanza suggests, if each individual doesn't do their part, we, too, will be poison with The Great Mother.

    1. "...we will be poisoned', not "poison". Well, I guess many of us are that, too. *sigh*

  4. And there is no individual redemption--humanity must all 'fess up and take giant steps forward. How I love your first stanza and its beauty all derived from balance in "chemistry’s vital soup."

  5. I totally agree with you. This powerful poem is the need of the hour :)

  6. Yes, you are right. At least Paris is a start. Really what are we doing to this planet. I read this morning that our usual banana is being killed off by a particular blight, and this will seriously harm the economies of at least four countries & we will not have bananas to eat. They are working on GMO bananas (sigh) to somewhat save bananas if that happens....but GMO? And animals like the Panda... We definitely consume and destroy & so seldom help the earth. We cut down forests out of greed not need. I do hope it is not too late to reverse...

  7. Sadly we have become sightless, experiencing only the now and hating our children so much that we care not that we leave them a dying earth where they cannot live the lives that we have done. I feel such shame.

  8. I am afraid but we are saying goodbye to the blue-green Eden soon. Thanks for the eye-opener Nicholas.

  9. Is there truly any rational person on the planet who believes the concept of climate change is a communist plot to undermine Christian nationalism? I think Paris has a really good chance of succeeding. Hope so.

  10. I love how you have used the 'science' in such a creative and passionate way - i think the answers do indeed lie with us...we function in the real world - the politicians..well...who knows if/where/when they function - a vital poem

  11. Right on Nick ! Every individual must be made aware of good environmental practice particularly in the third world. Education is the answer. Pollution is overwhelming on this planet at the moment.

  12. We have to keep our focus on what is needed and what we can do instead of distractions by those that will never change.

  13. I so much agree. It will only be healed if we own the problem and the solution! Beautiful piece!