Sudden Scene of the Long Now

It’s over us, this sky-blue world, completely.
It’s over us, this world’s end nightmare sky.
There are waves high overhead, impossibly,
Waves wearing masks of cloud with blue suede trim.
Who can say if we’ve been taken by the heel
And shaken upside down into a daze.
What might be water as readily as air
Quavers with light at or above jet level,
Transparent leaves in wind; somehow we know
It for the excess heat we’ve cultivated.
Here in the swathe south of the Sahara
We find the added color of earth hide
From trans-Atlantic, Amazon-bound plume,
A local touch on catastrophe worldwide.
No supercomputer simulations
Predicted this precipitous reaction
Of atmosphere, the oceans thrown above,
Complete with mysterious deep sea creatures
Who reach down by the myriad to assault
The zone of former human dominance.

We ourselves were source of the glass-in gas
The rich-quick brew of this deadly prodigy,
Carrying around daft ideas of the depth
In solvency of the world’s water bodies.
The downside proof upside our heads is something
That amazes even anime-trained eyes.
This tsunami of ocean and sky rises
In riot of runaway thermodynamics—
There’s nowhere to scarper; we might not make
The cold and comfortless high ground of space.
Demoniac white wave heads tumble in weather;
No sooner do we blink the driven foam
From our rude eyes of upside down monsoon
Than breakers walk up in godzilla humps
Against the vast stackments of bric-a-brac
Which are big-man barracks and swank marinas,
No less than half our aggregated wealth
Arranged on leagues of continental shelf.

Lọ̀tá the grass rat wakes up months later
From a stunned-by-event hibernation;
She blinks just in time to spy the very last
Of the human race hauled wriggling spaceward
Through oozing cerulean in the diffuse grip
Of gargantuan man-o-war tentacles.
What should she do, the world’s renewed heiress
With all this vaingloriousness down here?
What use to her the fiber underground,
The surface level blacktop crossings,
The lattices of high wire sleep-talking
In remnant volts of robo-call messages?
(No surprise, even after cataclysm
The computers remember every bill,
And close long lines of circuit once overdue.)
Lọ̀tá remembers where she must not tarry
Or she might suffer head throb; she knows to skirt
The deserted commercial zones and their
Persistent pulses from wifi hotspots;
She’s still haunted by the ghost face that lit up
When she first trod on dropped glass of gorille—
Blink-blink low battery sign—what’s left of them
Are plastics, plastics, worked casually from oil,
Not so casually resettled in soil.

The mushrooms and the grasses and the trees
Break up blacktop with their slow shouldering growth
And will in time, marching in green militant
Neutralize this acid-drop soup of a sky.
All the while, for the world’s rodents and roaches,
Larders are well stocked with ticky-tack boxes
Of high octane fuel, late day expiring foods.
Lọ̀tá’s new subspecies squeaks out: hosanna!
Gone are those fools whose ruins strew her savannah.

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