Dispatch #059

tools at hand

by Peggy Morrison

It seems like the beginning of the end of the world
heart heavy with spooky darkness
forests consumed by orange flames
massive plumes of smoke rising
weary, dirty firefighters
risking their lives
Climate change, arson, and capitalist greed
lacerate beauty– 

The world is 
painfully changing 
trapped in a house
in a city
surrounded by unhealthy air
separated from human contact
I hold on by a thread, 
see my friend's 2D face
hear her virtual voice;

It seems like the beginning 
of the end of the world,
but I can't believe it. 
Like apocalypse from the bible
Road Warrior, The Handmaid's Tale, 
Parable of the Sower

in California everything is burning 
the water runs out
in Florida and Alabama 
tornadoes and floods
internet and cell phones down

the police against the people
It is the time when the most vicious dominate 
when the gentle and tender are hidden;

The pandemic was eery
because it was renowned to be an invisible killer 
it could be everywhere and anywhere
It made us anxious 
we stayed away from each other,

I was afraid of people.
The scariest time was when
we couldn't  breathe the air
The sky was black with smoke some days
orange like a solar eclipse other days. 
I hid inside the house
looking at the ominous cloud of ash
settling outside the windows. 

It seemed like the beginning 
of the end of the world,
but I didn't believe it, 
to me it feels like we are surviving
to me it feels like we'll adapt
rise up together.

I visualize the red fir forest, old growth
I walked through 
in those same mountains 
last month
deep green, 
moist and venerable
I'm raising a garden
I harvest each meal. 

We use the tools at hand to survive
We adapt
connect through 
video chat
I wash the ash off the vegetables 
with real water 
coming out of the hose. 
It's climate change but it's not 
the end of the world. 
It's not the apocalypse, 

I see the searing blaze swirl around me
I want to move but I am waiting
If my shoulders were stronger, 
more graceful
I could fly 
If my legs were stronger, 
more svelte
I could run– 

I thought about moving to a different country
with a better president
or a different state with better weather
I haven't left yet 
I'm still home. 


1 reply »

  1. Dispatches from Quarantine! Tools at Hand is a dispatch I wrote 9/6/2021… Like a message in a bottle, it’s found its way to light today.
    Thanks to Dispatches from Quarantine for publishing my thoughts!


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