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We are witnessing the continuing rape of the planet, our blue oasis swimming in a vacuous sea. There is something basic at work here, an addiction, even a malice, a hatred of some against beauty, against all things delicate and fair.
Somehow we all acquiesce to some degree to the war and savagery that result. Without following a new vision, we will all live and die amidst squalor. This morning my wife came to bed in tears. She had stayed up most of the night unable to sleep because of thoughts of the gulf and those wetlands and those lives. And then at dawn the birds had begun singing as they do to greet the rising sun and it broke her heart.
The following was written in 1991 on the eve of the first Gulf War, but the sense of it applies today.  

   THE OILMAN’S BURDEN

Take up the oilman’s burden,
Send forth the best we breed.
Commit our kids to slaughter,
In service of your greed.

The homes they shall not gladden,
The loves they shall not wed.
Tie on a yellow ribbon,
They’ll be our "honored dead".

Take up the oilman’s burden,
Ye dare not stoop to less,
Nor call on conservation,
To curb your avarice.

What lands will ye not plunder,
What waters ye not spoil?
What death of elk and otter,
What seabeds fouled for oil?

Take up the oilman’s burden,
Think of the good it brings.
It gives us Ziploc baggies,
And lubes our piston rings.

And as the war clouds gather,
And fury fills the sky,
How many oilmen’s children
Are marching out to die?

Take up the oilman’s burden,
Are we the less to blame?
Have we not fed your habit,
And is this not our shame?

Originally posted to Cardshark on Wed May 12, 2010 at 06:42 AM PDT.

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