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Friday, 21 October 2011

Talking Rubbish...

Snow flakes
           fall like confetti
ice-cold on oil-dark sea
           melt at the touch
and are gone
            the sea absorbing them completely
as it absorbs all that fall into it -
or so we thought
                and threw in far too much.

Below the surface
                 - say seven thousand feet -
where oil-dark turns to total blindness
hydro-thermal vents
                   (underwater geysers,
                   "black smokers", as they're called)
spew iron and sulphide -
four hundred centigrade, let's say - too hot
for any creature known to us to live.
But even there our waste is killing them.

          Strange, eyeless adaptations
          of entities we thought we knew.
          Like creatures out of some Sci Fi
          thriving in a temperature
          four times our boiling point

          and poisoned by our heavy metals.

A small boy drops a lolly stick.
Rain washes it:
down drains;
           through sewers;
                          to the sea
where currents known as gyres
shepherd it onto a floating tip
now growing exponentially

          factory waste, insecticides
          toxic chemicals and human tissue
          plastics, high and low grade radiation
          and waste from hospitals.

How many little boys
to make this tip -
as it now is -
two U.S.A.s in size?

19 comments:

sunny said...

Hi Mr Dave,you combine comment, culture, , sociology very well.keep it up

Isabel Doyle said...

Lovely images of our darkness - is it human nature to have middens? Seems so ...

Isabel x

kaykuala said...

Dave,
You have brought forth not many are aware about, pollution undersea. All these while the so called pollution on land and global warming took our attention. Excellent!

Hank

Jim Murdoch said...

You learn something new every day. There is a Wikipedia article called
Great Pacific Garbage Patch. I never heard of such a thing. Makes total sense. That's the trouble with us humans, we think if we can't see something it's gone away forever.

Arnab Majumdar said...

... and we pride our species as being the 'pinnacle of evolution.'

Cheers,
Arnab Majumdar on SribbleFest.com

ArtistUnplugged said...

The mysteries of the ocean, or so we think. Nice way to put it into words.

Hannah Stephenson said...

The deep ocean as landfill....horrifying but I know it's true. Thanks for this.

Other Mary said...

Well done, as always Dave. Not at all what I was expecting from the title.

Elizabeth Grimes said...

Such a sad topic! But well written. I suppose that's what poetry is! :)

Brian Miller said...

in our pinnacle...yes...and then we will wonder one day when we sit atop the trash heap...nice write dave...

Mama Zen said...

Scary! Great write.

The Weaver of Grass said...

And we tend to think of the sea as so clean. There is so much rubbish and pollution - not to mention nuclear waste -that one wonders where it will all end Dave.

Jenny Woolf said...

I love the image of snowflakes falling on the sea and being absorbed instantly. It is a fantastic lead in to the heavy punch of the poem's real message.

Windsmoke. said...

The first stanza done it for me and the rest flowed along nicely :-).

Mary said...

Dave, this is truly frightening realism.

The Unknowngnome said...

Nice trash talk Dave.

It starts with each of us and should end with each of us.

Dave King said...

sunny
Shall try - yessiree!

Isabel
Alas, yes, I agree: it does seem so. I think maybe Jim has put his finger on it.

kaykuala
Pollution of the sea may prove to be the greater threat.

Jim
I think your final sentence puts it in a nutshell. I did knowabout the garbage patch, but couldn't quite believe what I thought I knew about the size of it, so I did go to Wikipedia to check. It was all I'd feared - and then a bit.

Arnab
Hi Welcome to you and many thanks for commenting. Makes me wonder about our capacity for self-deception!

ArtistUnplugged
Nature's oceanic mysteries are the deepest on Earth, many believe. Unfortunately, there is no mystery about what man is doing.

Hannah
I agree, as horrific as any piece of fiction could be.

Dave King said...

Other Mary
Thanks for saying. Good to know.

Elizabeth
Thanks. Well, it's certainly what poetry can be.

Brian
Yes, you're right... we'll be arguing about how it could ever have happened.

Mama Zen
Thanks. Glad you thought so.

The Weaver of Grass
Yes, even now, when all are aware of the problem, it still goes on as when we were ignorant of it.

Jenny
Many thanks for that, it's the aspect with which I was most satisfied, so it's good to know.

Windsmoke
Many thanks for this.

Mary
It is frightening, I agree.

The Unknowngnome
Thanks, and yes, I do so agree.

lucychili said...

yes i agree it is scary.
wish we could standardise on only biodegradable waste