Reverse Noah's Ark

The Animals are Leaving

    One by one, like guests at a late party 
    They shake our hands and step into the dark: 
    Arabian ostrich; Long-eared kit fox; Mysterious starling.

    One by one, like sheep counted to close our eyes, 
    They leap the fence and disappear into the woods: 
    Atlas bear; Passenger pigeon; North Island laughing owl; 
    Great auk; Dodo; Eastern wapiti; Badlands bighorn sheep.

    One by one, like grade school friends, 
    They move away and fade out of memory: 
    Portuguese ibex; Blue buck; Auroch; Oregon bison; 
    Spanish imperial eagle; Japanese wolf; Hawksbill 
    Sea turtle; Cape lion; Heath hen; Raiatea thrush.

    One by one, like children at a fire drill, they march outside, 
    And keep marching, though teachers cry, "Come back!" 
    Waved albatross; White-bearded spider monkey; 
    Pygmy chimpanzee; Australian night parrot; 
    Turquoise parakeet; Indian cheetah; Korean tiger; 
    Eastern harbor seal ; Ceylon elephant ; Great Indian rhinoceros.

    One by one, like actors in a play that ran for years 
    And wowed the world, they link their hands and bow 
    Before the curtain falls.

    Poem copyright © 2006 by Charles Harper Webb. Reprinted from Amplified Dog by Charles Harper Webb, published by Red Hen Press, 2006, by permission of the author and publisher.

Much more where this came from, Daily Kos.  I leave you with this story by the late environmental activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Wangari Maathai

One day a terrible fire broke out in a forest - a huge woodlands was suddenly engulfed by a raging wild fire.  Frightened, all the animals fled their homes and ran out of the forest.  As they came to the edge of a stream they stopped to watch the fire and they were feeling very discouraged and powerless.  They were all bemoaning the destruction of their homes.  Every one of them thought there was nothing they could do about the fire, except for one little hummingbird.

This particular hummingbird decided it would do something.  It swooped into the stream and picked up a few drops of water and went into the forest and put them on the fire.  Then it went back to the stream and did it again, and it kept going back, again and again and again.  All the other animals watched in disbelief; some tried to discourage the hummingbird with comments like, "Don't bother, it is too much, you are too little, your wings will burn, your beak is too tiny, it’s only a drop, you can't put out this fire."

And as the animals stood around disparaging the little bird’s efforts, the bird noticed how hopeless and forlorn they looked. Then one of the animals shouted out and challenged the hummingbird in a mocking voice, "What do you think you are doing?" And the hummingbird, without wasting time or losing a beat, looked back and said:
"I am doing what I can."
In this time of escalating climate change, this is our challenge. To refuse to surrender to the apathy of denialism and fatalism.
To be fierce in our defense of the Earth.
To continue to fight in the face of overwhelming odds.
And always, always, to do what we can.
Because it is only by each of us doing what we can, every day, that we will save the Earth – for ourselves, and for the generations to come.  Like the hummingbird.

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