The chunks of ice are melting. In the distance the steel spires of the city glitter above the still water where bloated bodies float. The marble steps the paintings the libraries the museums the ancient statues and books. All gone. We knew the glaciers were melting. We knew the water would rise. We knew it was just a matter of time even when the President swore there was no such thing as climate change since God controls the weather. We were not blind. We saw how the currents swept in and ripped out the dunes and flooded the streets of cities. We knew the dams did not hold. We saw the moon turn red.
I no longer smell the stench of burning flesh or oil and gas or hear the screams of women. The roar of the winds died down. The men who wore black masks and chopped off peoples’ head are long since drowned. It is quiet here. The water is retreating into shining pools and thin gnarled branches rise like dancers in the morning mist. I hear the chirp of a bird. I am afraid to ask for anything, but if there is one bird maybe more will come. I am alone except for the scattered bones of sheep and cows that whiten the fields with sharp edges. So much buried in the mud I will not touch / windows, roofs, televisions, I Pads, X boxes, medals, blankets, shirts and shoes. I am the skeleton of who I was.
I see green buds. They come first on the thorn bushes, and I remember His crown was made of thorns. I remember the funny face of a clown with red rouged cheeks and how the elephants marched slowly around the big ring in the circus with the babies using their trunks to hold onto the tails of the mothers. We caged animals in zoos. I wonder if any animals escaped and where they are or if they drowned. I remember the painted turtles and the blue velvet ribbons mother twined in my braids and the buttered popcorn at the movies.
I must not think. I must not remember. I amuse myself by singing songs. I sing Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, When you wish upon a star, Auld Lang Syne, Stormy Weather, I am looking over a four leaf clover. I hum what I remember of Night in Tunisia by Dizzy Gillespie and Round about Midnight by Thelonious Monk, then comes London Bridge is Falling Down and Little Lambs Like Ivy.
He was our Shepherd and we were His lambs. If they never listened to Him before they nailed Him to the cross, who am I to speak? I sit in a rowboat beached in a field of daisies. I saw the lakes turn into deserts and the red and yellow boats curled like snails in the sand. I saw the wind rip the roofs off houses. A tornado tore a baby girl right out of her mother’s hands. I saw the shards and splintered wood the torn white sails. The schools of cod are gone along with the coral reefs and squid and whales. The dolphins left us first casting their bodies on the beach like signals. We never listened.