Our knee is on creation’s neck.
Her breath is halting, weak,
Strangled by our disregard, our cold contempt.
Our mother, she is crying out beneath our weight,
Beseeching that we love her.
Let her arms envelop us
So that we all can breathe,
Can feel the pulse of common blood
Within one heart,
So that engorged with pain
We fall upon our knees beside her,
Pray to her
Lie prostrate by her body
Her tears baptizing us within the flood
Preparing us for resurrection.
Like many of you in the past year, I have been struggling with the haunting image of the brutally indifferent murder of George Floyd. At the same time, like you, I am living in the shadow of the Great Extinction we are causing by our radical changes to the atmosphere and our climate. The images came together for me in this poem, which I share simply as a means of meditation on the moment of judgment and possible renewal in which we live.