From mountain high to canyon low,
Over and under, our effects do flow.
Through river valleys that used to be
Breadbaskets, there’s just sage to see.
There’s drowned or parched riparian life,
And death brought on by the strife
Of maintaining river flows,
Lake levels that boats may go
On bringing those who never stray
Off the paved and managed way
To sights profound to still the heart,
Now littered and scored with “folk” art.
But what to do with all our waste?
I know. We’ll use it for a base
Of roads to take us to the trees,
For wood, for paper, for the ease
Of modern living. And the cost?
Coyotes? Wild flowers lost?
Trees for hugging? Frivolous things.
No matter! Next year will bring
Something growing in their place,
Something tolerant of our taste
For heavy metals we’ve displaced,
For cyanide and nuclear waste.