In Case of Emergency

emergency climate change

In news we have more instances of climate change creating natural disaster. Earlier this year California was consumed in wild fire.  Hurricanes wracked the Atlantic coast. Alaska had an earthquake, which set off anxieties about a coastal tsunami swell. The Appalachian faultline is rumbling. So, too, is the earth being fracked in Lancashire. So my Poetry Daily addresses emergency strategies. Which may be a bit of a Job’s comfort as my late friend Jan used to say.


In Case of Emergency
 
There may be little point
in smashing glass…
 
In a quake:
it is recommended you
hang in a threshold place.
 
In a twister:
climb into the bath, pull a mattress over
if you haven’t got a cellar.
 
In a nuclear attack:
a bunker
won’t much matter.
 
It will be a matchstick world
full of hologram men
and women.
 
Now what do you hold onto
when all around you is shifting?
 
Some grapple faith, while
others grasp onto hope.
Still others reach for what they love.
 
It may be a tangible thing – another human,
a dog, a cat, even a pet rat.
We’re hardwired for protect and survive.
 
In case of emergency,
our ancestors knew the importance
not to panic.
 
Evolution may favour the fittest.
Worry may not.
Darwin did not stop and consider
 
the kinked calculus of fortune
in his equation
or definition of fitness.
 
Hold onto the magic.
It will show its harrowed face.
It may say it has a name.
 
Faith, it may say.
Hope, it may be called.
Love, it may answer to.
 
It may be courage.
But it will turn up
when most unexpected.
 
Hold fast in that moment.
It is the old magic that knows how
to shift with every shift and tide
to face the giant wave of time.
 
Copyright © Bee Smith 2018
 
 

Featured image Photo by Torsten Dederichs on Unsplash


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