Nature doesn’t need humans; it was there before and will be there after humanity is gone.
The last plasma puff of the engine invites them out
Of the vessel, wearing refrigerated high-tech suits
Equipped complete with claw-like studs gripping cracked grout,
Fighting for balance against the gusts in their pursuit.
Tsal pulls out the holo-tablet to map their position
And consult the travel plan. The air crackles to life
At the rod in his hand’s and the one on his chest’s intersection
Showing in script and diagrams what once was humanity’s hive.
A step on a fish bone draws a snap which pulls
His eyes downwards then around the oily dirty landscape
Where lay more bones from different creatures whose lives were culled
By a slow death they’d tried in vain to escape,
Probably the last of each of their species to have braved heat,
Thinning air, toxins in solid, liquid and gas form everywhere.
Tsal thought of who’d ate whom last at the eve of total defeat
As lives became meatless skeletons after plants had left here.
Ok! Back to finding the once supreme masters of this rock
Who built the cranes surrounding this now barren and dry seabed,
As if adorning the grave of many a beast. With some luck,
The image in his hand lights red as it hovers over a broken bone head.
The skull had been opened as you would a coconut
To sip the sweet sap. Tsal’s blood skips with his fear
At the thoughts hitting his head, but his fears are proven fact
When he sees a silver spoon in the head, spoon branded “Pierre”.
Further down the seabed, lies another identical but intact specimen
With a matching fork he’d attempted to stick into another bone,
Before his last mitochondrion, like its peers, gave up on the machine,
Surrendering to fatigue, thirst, and probably a grave wound as shown by marks on the foot bones.
Tsal turns to Pezal to share the shock on both their faces
It was university all over again, trying to understand this:
There was water, there were plants, fertile land in most places,
And yet cannibalism was the last act of this great species.
Despair from hunger, intoxication, thirst which dominated
A race which once ordered water about with pumps and dams,
Told the wind where to blow, had command over all ever created,
But chose to destroy and not rebuild in their crazy advance.
There are many more heads half buried by the mocking wind,
Complete with scarred arms and legs, with once plastic clothes
Ripped and singed in the hot abrasive vengeful wind,
The wind which once was a gentle breeze in which bathed the olives of Rhodes.
A few hours of tittering on past glories of a planet,
Tsal, Pezal and the team see a screen still alive from sun’s power,
Broadcasting (most likely in a loop) with partly dark LEDs
The news of a time when Nature hadn’t turned entirely sour.
Tsal asks himself like a sharp stab to his chest:
“Didn’t they read the signs?” Tropical rains coming early
Then late year on year, messing up planting and harvesting,
While thermometers lost touch with reality, doing exactly what wasn’t said on the telly.
Floods washed away months of tilling and planting on estates,
While droughts washed away whole villages, leaving them empty,
And more nuclear disasters decimated whole cities and states,
But life went on disregarding the warning in Humpty Dumpty
Fiddling with the core’s magnetic fields led to imbalance,
And the Earth struggled to shake off the destroyers,
Spewing molten venom and nerve gas to dance
Upon the lives of sons, daughters and fathers and mothers.
Yeah, Nature had long lost what was left of patience,
As the Ozone let in the rays so long waiting at Earth’s doors,
To steal the seas and rivers out into space’s expanse,
As if to say: “You have all, yet you don’t recognize, and keep seeking more.”
The screen kept painting the history for the team
In horrific scenery as the chickens came home to roost:
The wars supported in media by ideologies it would seem,
Whereas deeper was the fight for resources needed for economic boost;
The environmental disaster with each new technological advance
Advertised as “CO2-saving”, disregarding the manufacturing fall out
As resources were dug out of Earth’s internals, not giving life a chance,
Leaving disasters in the wake of “Eco-friendly” mining in the South;
The over-fishing, over-eating, over-mining, over-everything
Requiring the support of a Nature, willing, but drawn
To the limit of breaking without empathy, care, understanding,
Foresight; just over-reaching to pull all put there from Life’s dawn,
To the point there was none left, no-one left.
“Remember the Galapagos heads documentary on TV?”
Tsal asked Pezal. “That was History warning of being Nature-deaf,
But nobody listened.” And they turned to get back onto their spaceship,
While the screen continued by looping every truly Eco-friendly initiative conceived
To amplify Nature’s warnings, to pause the frantic rush
Of capitalistic gain-hunt. But all this as nought was perceived
And even Earth Hour’s darkness, though laudable, in the din of Nasdaq was but a hush.
Let’s all go out and support Earth Hour on 28th March 2015…let’s make this silence of whirrs and buzzes a little LOUDER.