Welcome to the Frontline.

We read the plaques, the info signs.
We shake our heads.
The facts are plain,
simple words for all to understand.
Life is on the brink.

If a crazed lunatic ran through the building,
shooting his semi-automatic rifle,
cutting down visitors and plants alike,
bullets firing through the glass panes,
peppering the Richmond sky beyond,
how shocking would that be?

We would cower at such danger.

But these words, which we do not disbelieve,
cause us to sigh, how sad,
and wander on at leisured pace through
continents and over islands, tracing
the danger and annihilation of
our benefactors.

Lost amongst the dank leaves,
a moist-feathered robin hops.
His coil of shrill sharp song
corkscrews through the air,
winding around the rare stems
which cling to life.

We watch him, out of place,
in this temple of Lazarus.
Is this the anecdote we will recall?
The plucky bird, attracted by the garden spade,
now caught amongst the dying,
not yet dead.

Welcome to the frontline – humans.

Linking this to OLN at d’Verse Poets where tonight Lisa is hosting.

We visited Kew Gardens this week. The Temperate House holds 10,000 species of plants and displays information on the work Kew is undertaking to save plants on the brink of extinction. It is both fascinating and shocking. Whilst touring the building we saw a robin hopping amongst the foliage.


23 thoughts on “Welcome to the Frontline.

  1. Marion, going to a place like that must bring it up close and personal, the magnitude of diversity that is being threatened with harm while humans seem oblivious most of the time to how urgent the need is.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is an excellent piece, Marion. It expresses so beautifully how I also feel about the climate crisis: we are sleepwalking to the edge of the abyss. And I do love Kew Gardens – happy memories of visiting when we lived nearby.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Well done Marion and very difficult question. How can we sleep so peacefully as the earth around us boils away? (Sentience is the frog in the cauldron, I suppose). Here in the US it was just announced that 22 species of animals are now officially extinct, mussels and a songbird and a woodpecker making the wild that much more absent. Your robin is central to the problem — we still see some nature so figure the rest of it is fine. Or don’t care to know more. Sentience.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Brendan. The roll call continues 😥. Thank goodness for places like Kew where they work to preserve and educate.


  4. Very well painted with words, our current plight. I think personally the dilemma is that it paralyzes us with its enormity, our brains can’t believe in a disaster on that scale, except as something beyond our powers to change.That’s very wrong of course, in fact, we’re the *only* ones who can change it. I especially like the compact, purposeful style of this, and the imagery of the robin.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you Joy for your comments 😊.

    Yes, its huge and I think some people regard it as someone else’s problem.


  6. Thank you Merril. I think we need to be literally smacked in the face to take notice. Yes, Kew is fabulous.😊


  7. Life is indeed on the brink, and yet many ignore what is right in front of their eyes because they fear being inconvenienced or losing profits.
    I write a lot about climate change myself.
    ~Ornery Owl~

    Liked by 1 person

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