Fast Commute

In the opening stanza of her long form poem, Fast Commute, local author Laurie Graham sets the scene of our climate changing times.

The wish that the extinct reverse
and the nearly gone be plucked from death
and the managed, risks, in my mouth
becoming a man with a chainsaw
on a plot the bank says he can to with what he wants

It’s another hold around the neck of the land
that says I am and will be
and not the leaf on the branch
or the sap of the being

The idea of return is folly
without first understanding leaving,
how empires rose on its hastening,
every inch of territory pruned
to grown the desired, every life
movable, extinguishable, economic

And we visitors, we invaders, we small, individual specks
of death, we want the larger machines to pour their tailings, we want them
uprooting all life with their governmental limbs,
we want a fast commute morning and evening,
the terms of life rejigged for us and away from Earth
as council, balance as ethic,
the hard lessons of one’s place within the whole

Opening lines from Fast Commute, by Peterborough poet Laurie D. Graham. McClelland and Stewart, 2022. Enjoy the rest of the poem in her book of the same name available at local bookstores.

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