Birds perch on countless branches, each a separate bell
ringing out the cadence of stories they must tell.
Around them, eerie silence, for no other sounds compete.
No calls of children playing. No pattering of feet
up and down the pavement. No playing girls and boys,
for all the busy humans, infamous for their noise,
are staying in their houses and no amount of blustering
from their scattered leaders is bound to stop their clustering.
Families draw in closer as friends all fade away
into their particular intentions for the day.
Offices turn cyber. Schools are merely screens.
Mothers sit at kitchen tables, perusing magazines.
Fathers pace on carpets and worry about money.
How are they to make it now that the world’s gone funny?
Now and then, the silence split open by a bell
tolling for the human race who haven’t done too well
at going with the scheme of things. They prefer to take over,
making malls and parking lots out of fields of clover.
Trashing up the landscape. Peppering the tide
with their plastic mountains grown too big to hide.
Is it any wonder how nature responds?
We’ve held her prisoner long enough. She’s sloughing off her bonds.
She’s given us broad hints, but still we do not mind her.
So she’s erasing her mistakes and putting us behind her.