“Barbed-Wire” and “An Unusual Mortality Event” by Marius Mason

One day in the prison yard, the resident grey cat chased heedlessly
A bird, who’d landed on the roof, all enclosed with steely swirls
And slipping through the curling razor wire, stalked
Until it caught her leg and stopping
Shaking as it sliced her paw..open..raw
The sharp barbs cutting fur and muscle, white and wounded to the bone
Blood dripping down the eves, yowling
And the bird forgotten, gone
Took so long a summer healing, that we wondered
If the fabled nine were used and done
But she survived and still sleeps the afternoon in sun, these days
Listening to the radio this morning in my cell,
ear to the wind and the wild world outside
All walls and razor wire, comes the rolling distant thunder
Of masses on the move, rivers of refugees
Each person fleeing worse and much worse behind them
Where everywhere is war
And those few wealthy nations, crossed arms close their gates
Spew tear gas and water cannons, raise up more walls
And I cannot help by wonder
As the thousands push their way through daily
Who will be cut, and who will bleed
And who will get away
To survive this and find the sun again
Somewhere, someday

“No Country Called Home” 2015

Marius writes: “[A] poem to remember 30 great whales that died in a very short period of time, recently, in the Gulf of Alaska (oh, where Shell just showed up to explore for oil, right?) The title is the actual code that the deaths come under for a piece of legislation.”

An Unusual Mortality Event
It has been “most difficult”, said Rowles, the scientist who
Said samples have been unobtainable
And as they are also (sadly) edible,
They’ve become elusive proofs, eviscerated beyond plain investigation
Hungry bears have wrecked havoc (and one might ask just why ARE they so hungry now?)
At the scene of the crime,
Leaving the system without an approved explanation (hence Dr. Rowles’ aggravation)
The Gulf of Alaska’s dark waters hold the secret still, a mystery
An anomaly, a rarity in history
And N.O.A.A., without a plan to build an ark
To save the giant whales
Cannot explain the sudden death of these
30 souls lost at sea
But my standard guess is: it’s just humanity
Once again blundering in our desperate way
Whether it be heating waters (from coal plants or from cars)
Or the military’s blasting (always preparing for more wars)
Or the missing fish we’ve vacuumed up and thrown half dead away
Or maybe just pollution drifting past
The pumping chimneys in their vast array
Or algal blooms (from oil spills) or airplane plumes (that cause reef kill)
Or any of a host of things we do
There’s no solid evidence, of course my dear,
But certainly lots of clues

Whale Watching 2014
Whale Watching 2014