Whether future, whether past,
this horror leaves me aghast.
For the dancers forced on laps,
for the buildings designed to collapse,
for the class and castes of disgust,
for the women who can only mistrust.
For the men aching with delusion,
for the children of such confusion,
for the internet conspiracy of connection,
for the falsity of viagra-fuelled erection.
To be neither the problem nor solution,
to espouse intelligent design over evolution,
to recall thoughts offered a penny,
to remember when honour seemed aplenty.
To a time when trees learned to forget,
to an era without genuine respect,
to a modern-day mantra of Why me?,
to the disintegration of accountability.
From people scarred by one another,
from a steroid and rohypnol subculture,
from girls who would rather be bought,
from boys who prefer not to be taught.
From the dirty deeds which cannot be undone,
from the war on terror, to heroes unsung,
from fear of overcrowding, to being alone,
from paranoia, to diseases unknown.
This is the age of lament.
This is rage without regret.
All of this eradicates consent.
All of this equates to torment.
Whether I grimace with horror,
or some other emotion or colour,
for all of these reasons and more,
I feel twisted to my core.
This poem is #20 in an 18+ poetry anthology e-book called Hiding in the Shadows. Destiny to Write Publications is also publishing it in paperback via lulu.com for worldwide distribution.
I used the expression before trees learned to forget originally in a 2011 poem called Watching.
This was first read at one of the Melbourne Writers Meetings on Sunday, 6th of March 2011, and was jotted into a notebook the Friday before that, March 4.
Such a great pleasure hearing some of the following too, plus meeting a few others of the RB Melbourne community