This is the official blog of Northern Arizona slam poet Christopher Fox Graham. Begun in 2002, and transferred to blogspot in 2006, FoxTheBlog has recorded more than 670,000 hits since 2009. This blog cover's Graham's poetry, the Arizona poetry slam community and offers tips for slam poets from sources around the Internet. Read CFG's full biography here. Looking for just that one poem? You know the one ... click here to find it.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

"Eight-Armed Revenge" by Christopher Fox Graham

"Eight-Armed Revenge"
By Christopher Fox Graham
For Sedona Public Library's Spring/Earth Day Celebration
Inspired by The Klute's poem "Whale War III"

Dear Bipeds,

you are almost at the point of no return
so we’d like to get some things
off our arms

now you mammals
and we cephalopods
have been at war
since the first sperm whale
and giant squid
grappled in the deep
dueling tooth to tentacle

your fishermen hunted our cousins
and our krakens plucked sailors
from your ships
but this cold water war could only last so long

you see, Bipeds,
times are changing thanks to your recklessness
and when the mass extinctions begin
we want you to know
who’ll be taking the driver’s seat

you’ve been dumping your garbage
into our home for far too long
farming our prey to extinction
turning us into delicacies like sushi

we understand fishing
we’re predators, too
though we don’t know how salmon, cod, or tuna taste cooked
fresh and raw, they’re scrumptious

now the chemicals are inexcusable
so we stay away from shore
but in the middle of the endless ocean
islands of trash float ignored
except by us
we’re learning how to your trash like tools
we didn’t need Prometheus
just Poseidon
when the first of us
learned how to reshape a soda can
into an arrowhead
and make fishing spear
your days of hegemony were numbered

The Deep Horizon oil spill was the last straw
one bridge too far,
one drop in the bucket too many
so now we’re arming

you’re not destroying the environment
you’re destroying your environment
and if you pump too much CO2 into the skies
something will evolve to thrive on it
life always finds a way to survive
but know, Bipeds, that that species
may not be yours
98 percent of the species who have called this rock home are extinct
Mother Earth doesn’t care which one of us rules
and to her, extinction is a hiccup
and there is always an understudy
ready to take the starring role
and evolve into the dominant species

we’ve seen it many times before
your dying rainforests aren’t the first
we remember the Carboniferous Rainforest Collapse 300 million years ago
when your ancestors were still cold-blooded amphibians

we watched continents drift and volcanoes erupt
we had front row seats for a dozen meteor impacts
at the end of the Permian, Triassic, Jurassic, Cretaceous, Eocene and Neogene Periods
we dined under the waves as the bodies of dinosaurs washed out to sea
as the mice that would eventually become you
took over

now you’ve decided to join the Thunder Lizards in the fossil record
so we’re putting you on notice that this is our time,
this will soon be our world

so when you’ve suicided yourselves into history
and wiped the surface clean of all the major predators
we, octopuses, squids, nautiluses and cuttlefish will begin our migrations to land
flopping tentacles onto dry land
planting flags made your leftover refuse
and declaring these continents as ours
evolving into land creatures
over the next millions of years
building cities and civilizations
and teaching our children from the moment they hatch
if you’re going to pollute your world
you going to get what you deserve

but worry not, Bipeds,
even in your deaths,
you’ll still be useful
millions of years from now
as we pump what remains of you
into our gas tanks and rocket ships
and sail out into the stars
away from this graveyard of the fallen
this tomb of species who failed to learn

From "The Future Is Wild:The Tentacled Forest Part 3"

Octopuses regularly move across dry land in tidal pools searching for food and escaping aquatic predators. Generally nocturnal, this one was video taped in daytime.


Igloo said...

Hard-hitting, vivid and humorous! Your accompanying media is pretty interesting.

WhatHealsMeKillsMe said...

Nice. My friend was just talking about that show, the one where the Octopuses rule the world millions of yrs after our extinction. Nothing is impossible! I love this poem! :D

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