With smoking breath

Against crackling ash and timber,
What fire runs, what craving wakes
The flesh of man; smoke haggard through
Their lungs — insatiated, they bulldoze
The jaguar land; flatten the monkey vine.

A super highway awaits the asphalt, awaits
The smog, seals off the breathing;
First peoples threading back deeper, looking
For the pure — the old trees, the river,
Now a morgue of old logs and vanishing water.

Rare species litter cracked mud with bones,
Unload their grief on the heels of progress,
Canopies creak and ache draining into a burning;
Poisonous frogs in a rending: blood, crying,
Howlers charred, starving for a body.

Spawning shade, midnight cloaks — marauders
Gutted to a reflection in a footprint pool;
Light, a sunder, crunch of indefatigable life,
Spikes the heat in a vacuous white;
Filament by filament, ravens with a merciless claw.

The voice of heavy machinery quickens a road,
North bound, south bound motorcars vein a forest;
A doom consummates a parking lot — waylays
A new growth. Halts a pace of greenness; souls dying
For a breath. They collapse into a grave like a lung.

Copyright © 03/30/18 lance sheridan®

With smoking breath

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6 comments on “With smoking breath

  1. Barbara says:

    This poem paints an entire world being destroyed by humans, what a write!! The images show a gradual death of a life, of nature, wooded trails, roaming critters and a robbing our existence of a healthy environment – another ACE Lance – Great!

  2. A powerful portrayal of mankind’s destruction of the natural world that sustains us. We may well be left gasping for air.

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