Climate Change Poem 8
Retention pond, December 2005
Two global events are occurring on September 24, 2011:
1. Moving Planet, a worldwide rally to demand solutions to the climate crisis.
2. 100 Thousand Poets for Change, a demonstration/celebration of poetry to promote serious social, environmental, and political change.
I thought: Why not do both?
Barring an emergency, I am posting from midnight to midnight, one poem per hour (at any time during that hour). That's starting from 00:00-01:00 and ending at 23:00-24:00 Eastern Time today.
All the poems are sonnets. Each takes its cue from an article dealing with climate change. The articles had been posted beginning on September 15 -- the date of the 24-hour Climate Reality Project that inspired me to do this -- to September 19, the day I drafted the twenty-fourth poem.
The poem for Hour 8 takes its cue from "Rising seas expected to wash out key California beaches" (Emmett Berg, Reuters, Sept. 15, 2011).
The calm Pacific laps at Venice Beach
And others up the California coast,
But now those townships lie within the reach
Of rising surf. Where once they liked to boast
Of tourist paradise and laid-back fun,
Authorities have entered a new space.
They watch their economics numbers run
And tally what erosion would erase.
One billion could be lost in homes and roads
In just five areas, in ninety years.
Lost infrastructure and wildlife abodes.
Pristine, iconic beaches long held dear.
Eleven-hundred miles of shore will wait
For seawalls, or for levees -- or just fate.
Part of the Solution website (chosen at random)
Treehugger, "the leading media outlet dedicated to driving sustainability mainstream."