Local Poets Slam on Climate Change
Wx and the City
I am earth...
In tune with her Nature
From achy knees on rainy days to
Mesopotamian clay colored hue
Marking spring with swollen eyes and stuffed nose
I am earth...
--From Untitled, by "2Deep the Poetess"
Last Wednesday, I attended the Earth Day Poetry Slam at the Marian Koshland Science Museum of the National Academy of Sciences. Local poets from DC Slam were invited to perform poems on climate change solutions. Poetry slam is the competitive art of performance poetry.
Keep reading for more excerpts from the climate change poetry slam...
Five poets brought climate and environment issues into a creative light. Some introduced familiar characters as a means of reaching the audience: a distraught Santa Claus; a melting Frosty the Snowman; and a polar bear visiting the White House in a business suit. Another poet created new characters out of water vapor and carbon dioxide. Still others made a more personal case, pondering their connection to the environment and posing actions we can take to improve it.
Here are some selected excerpts from the slam, in the poets' own words:
Kermit was right
It isn't easy being green
I mean, I gotta trade in my car for a hybrid
Replace every light bulb with an eco one
Turn down the thermostat and turn off the light when I walk out of a room.
I'll go paperless with my checking account statements.
Pause and think about the environment before I print out an email.
Ride my bike more. Take public transportation.
Minimize my carbon footprint by supporting local farms and planning out my routes.
... Let's see, now, did I miss anything?
I think we might've missed the point.
...This checklist of best practices resembles
New Year's Resolutions and this year's latest fashion trend
More than saving the globe.
They're promises quickly broken and forgotten,
Seemingly tedious tasks made temporarily convenient,
Actions that require more green in your pocket,
Details that distract from its roots.
It isn't easy being green, but the point is simple.
To recognize consumption isn't without consequences.
To acknowledge our position and effects on a global population.
To live well now and for future generations...
--From Green Checklist, by Jenny Lares
I gave you fertile ground; you just coated it with pavement
I gave you the animals; you poached them to endangerment
I carried you for eons; you complained of same-old same-old
I gave you rainbows; you complained that it rained, though
I gave you water; you said it tasted like nothing
That hurt my feelings; I cried; you complained it was flooding
I gave you seven natural wonders; you said, "Why not eight?"
I told you to settle down with a nice girl; you said, "Why not eight?"
But I never stopped loving you, because that's not what mother's do
I just let you do what you do so that I wouldn't smother you
But then, inevitably, thee met she:
Miss Chlorofluorocarbon: CFC
She had an air about her that left my house green
Entered my atmosphere without wiping her feet
As if that weren't enough, she wasn't alone; she rolled with crew
Her cousins: water vapor, nitrous oxide, CO2
Now, water vapor wets the bed; nitrous oxide's always laughing
CO2 ain't got no job; she got laid off from manufacturing
And I don't want to call Miss CFC a thief; that's not quite fair
But I can't find my glaciers; could have sworn they were just right there...
...And I, your mother, Earth, try to stay calm, show no emotion
As the home I built for you succumbs to coastal erosion
...But I never stopped loving you, because that's not what mothers do
Even when them greenhouse gases passed and damn near smothered you
I'll give you all I've got 'til all I've got is not enough for you
Even if you give up on me, I'll never give up on you.
--From Motherly Love, by Drew Anderson (aka "Droopy the Broke Baller") Copyright 2009
...Enchanted by the thought that she [Mother Nature] will
always be there for you
There will be no lullabies to calves
Or education to angel fish
as the schools are empty below the sea
Which is rising,
Turning continents into Stationary
As they too
Never saw the iceberg
Because it was rising at their ankles...
--From Mother's Nature, by "2Deep the Poetess"
This is why it's hot: global warming, no denying it
Destroying the environment, we're poisoning the climate
Spend billions on Iraq, but this war is on our own ground
Look at how Hurricane Katrina hit my hometown
Now I know what you're thinking: hurricanes happen
But hurricanes are strengthened because of our actions
Industrial pollution, vehicular emissions
Can't take the heat? Better get up out the kitchen
...If you think we lost the war on drugs, you ain't the only one
'Cause every last American's addicted to petroleum
Acid rain makes a storm feel like a sauna
Guess we won't be happy until Gaia is a goner
Like Al Gore said, the truth is inconvenient
And we can all see it but refuse to believe it
And this is why it's hot
...This is why it's hot
Fahrenheit a hundred on the dot
...It's gon flood
It's gon flood
It's gon FLOOD!
--From This Is Why It's Hot by Drew Anderson (aka "Droopy the Broke Baller") Copyright 2007
...Life is cyclical,
But we don't respect the cycle.
Mother Nature is dying,
But no one wants to check her vitals.
--From Untitled, by "Fried Sushi"
| April 29, 2009; 11:00 AM ET
Categories: Climate Change, Posegate, Wx and the City
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