Friday, July 2, 2010

the awful spill...

I came across this poem about the oil spill, written by John Wareham, who was nominated for a Pulitzer for his book Sonnets for Sinners (worth checking out):


I want my life back, cried the BP chief,
oblivious to the pelican’s grief,
as gushing fool’s gold plumed the living reef,
and fearful creatures stared in disbelief.
Oh, noble, formerly feathered albatross,
now embalmed in crudest ooze from hell,
please kindly note the oilman’s aching loss,
and help restore his life, which once was swell.
Oh, majestic, magic, winged creature,
cauterize that oilman’s fulsome portal;
unfurl your powers and return his leisure;
absolve his sins and become immortal.
An act of such mercy from avian ranks
will for sure secure the head honcho’s thanks.

So slip your sickening golden glue and soar,
then summon all your strength and dive full-bore
into the aching sea to quell the gore
that gushes from the wound within the core.
If only you, my slickened friend, could pray,
what awesome incantations you would witch;
you’d melt the gum that binds you to the clay,
free all frightened creatures from tarry pitch—
then be lauded by lobbyists all day long,
and parade the town in an open car,
confettied by teeming ticker-tape throngs,
and courted by corpulent commissars.
Instead, alone, with anxious, pleading eyes,
you merely scan the tide, and wait to die.
 John Wareham / June 2010