(photo by Cheryl Long)
ready as Noah
so i gathered the members of my community
and we prepared our Transition Plan:
we’re set to handle a world without cheap oil,
without a stable climate,
without an industrial ‘growth’ economy,
and each evening i learn to play the sad music
of world-weary worried singer-songwriters
who sensed what was going on years ago
but couldn’t quite put it into words.
i’ve shrunk my dreams and expectations
to such a sustainable degree
that even the “i”s i write are small letters,
and my footprint’s now so small
it doesn’t even leave tracks in the snow.
i should be ready as Noah.
so what do i do now,
when there’s nothing more that must be done
and in this newly terrible world
nothing seems easy or fun anymore?
i thought my role would be to chronicle collapse,
and through my gentle fiction
help the ones still here beyond the end of days
imagine better ways to live
but now that seems a joyless task
whose purpose is not clear
and whose intended readers do not care
what i’d presume to tell them anyway.
i’m learning, much too late in life,
how to be present, self-accept, how to be generous
and love without restraint
and to let go the unreal stories
taught to me by those with best intentions,
and repeated to myself ’til i went mad.
i’m learning now to live a natural life, and value time,
and simply be
the space through which stuff passes.
Derrick Jensen tells us all to listen to the land
and in good time we’ll know exactly what to do,
but i’ve been listening hard
and my land merely whispers words
i cannot hear or understand.
so now i simply wait to learn the role
the world intends for me.
oh hurry up please world i’m waiting now i’m ready
can you tell me, ’cause i owe you so much
and i feel your suffering
in this dark and empty hole inside my heart:
what can i do to pay you back for all you’ve given me
throughout my privileged western life?
i’ll be your Noah, Gaia, i am ready
but i don’t know what to do…