October 25, 2007

Changes of Climate

Changes of Climate

Once I lived in polar night,
Burned summer fat for winter light.

When my store was nearly gone,
There came someone like Tropic sun.

I shed my clothes in so much heat
And the ice-mountains in retreat

Fled downhill over river-banks,
Sweat streaming from their white-skinned flanks.

Now, though all around I see
A fragrant moist community

Of fevered growth and sudden storm
Where insect generations swarm

And flesh is eager to divide
And fruit is roundly multiplied,

I dare not lose my Arctic skill,
My strategies against the chill:

What if the fire quit that face?
What if that sun shifted its place?

What if my clouds obscured its light?
What if I woke to daylong night?

Cold would then constrict this scene
And pinch the bud and bleach the green

And scatter those bright birds, all lost
In one shotgun blast of frost.

The giant tendrils withering,
Flesh shrinking into shivering,

Lichens and one stunted tree
Replacing this dense canopy,

And then, upon their well-worn track,
The ice-monsters lumbering back.

Copyright ©Naomi Replansky