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POEM: The Hubris of Human Beings

By Thursday, Sep 5, 2019 Viewpoints

The hubris of human beings

Trying to survive

The wrath of a wounded planet

Hurricane Dorian

Flattening the Bahamas

Hovering near the Florida shore


Some people defy evacuation

Hunker in their defiance

Behind gated windows

And bottles of water

Expecting to be spared


Others pack their cars with children

Stalling along a highway

One-way out of this peninsula

To get the hell out of there


Safer in the Berkshires

For our time will come

I watch the coverage

Over-zealous meteorologists

Exchange with hyper newscasters

The eye, cone, mile-an-hour winds

Surges of ocean revolt

Reverence for such unleashed power

A symptom, no, outcome

Of climate change


This, just the beginning of the season

As they say

When warm water rises, condenses, and swirls

In perilous bodies of liquid in the air

While human life on land

Culprits to our own destruction

Talk of how to rebuild

Taunting nature’s inclination

To cleanse itself


Aerial images

Miles of crushed structures

Submerged vehicles

Zoom in — a floating girl with her dog

Up to her chest in water

How can this not be

The beginning, not just of a season

But the end of the human world

On a planet that I am rooting for


Deborah Golden Alecson

September 3, 2019