Unnatural – Poem


You say I should get out more, that I
should admire nature, that I should swim
in its decorous wisdom. You say humanity

is the stupidest of creatures, and must repair
this umbilical snip from its own creation.
But what am I to admire? Surely not

the sun, rising and setting its work
each day without question, until it buries
itself against its own darkness. Not

the blinking packs of birds blotting
the sky each simple year, or the hurricane
which gripped an entire city with its bluster,

then wandered off and squandered its power
over an empty stretch of marsh. Not
my dog, who’ll do anything for food,

or my cat and her haughty obsessions,
or the silver maple in my backyard
which has yet to figure out it’s January.

The queen’s wreath in the garden
is greedy, it does not know when to stop,
and the passion vine is vulgar, whores all summer

to the bees that die knowingly in its folds.
And what about the fish you caught last season,
with a rusty hook already lodged

in his opalescent jaw? You freed it from your line
then threw it back, and it glimmered away,
ignorant of its own recurrent escape.