Broken

van Gogh wrote: ‘The conscience
is a man’s compass.’ Our compass broke,
we have no common sense or sentience,
and Earth is barely turning – into a bad joke.
We harvest palm oil and rainforests choke,
oceans on this so-called blue planet
are drowning in a mass of plastic,
and fur-coated men grin as polar ice
melts into the background of selfies.
Who can fix the compass, point us
in the right direction to a clean world,
where bicycle bells tinkle on a cool breeze?

Kim M. Russell, 13th June 2020

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A re-write of a poem from July 2019 for earthweal open link weekend

14 thoughts on “Broken

  1. Funny, we seem to be absorbed in the same quandary — you compress the violations well and leave the door ajar just so for the possibility of something clean at last and forever. Heaven’s bell or death knell, who knows, but it sure is good to hear ’em. – Brendan

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I still have some hope that someone, a group, or a whole society will fix the compass before we all go to hell in a hand cart, Brendan. There are so many of us who clearly see and understand, to greater or lesser extent, what is happening that surely we can tip the balance and show the world we care.

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  2. The shaman says that what we put out into the universe helps the shift. He said we are faced by a hole and a portal – our choice whether we fall down the hole or go through the portal. He also says our art is our resistance, and to use it to help the shift. I love that. Wonderful poem, I love that clean world with tinkling bicycle bell – the world of my childhood. May it come again.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’d love to hear that tinkle of a bicycle bell and the bicycle like a new world compass go in the right direction. We have lost our course. Will we find it? Your poem asks just the right question.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Some of the teenagers I used to teach have turned into responsible young adults who have seen the light – I think they might try to fix the compass!

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