William Heath

The Future 

I’ve always been curious 
about the centuries before 
I was born, now I worry 

about the years I will miss.                                          
I must admit my mind 
tells me that the world 

at present is taking a turn 
for the worse, as if things 
weren’t terrible enough 

as they are.  Temperatures 
will climb, water will rise, 
bad weather of all sorts 

will wreak havoc across 
our vulnerable globe. 
China, smiling benignly  

as if nothing were wrong,  
will spread tendrils, taking 
whatever its empire needs. 

As for us, will we be up  
to the task of defending 
our identity or integrity? 

Will the dumb keep 
dumbing down, the smart 
still outsmart themselves, 

and whatever the case is, 
however unacceptable, 
will it be accepted? 

© William Heath

William Heath has published three poetry books, The Walking Man, Steel Valley Elegy, and Going Places; a chapbook, Night Moves in Ohio; three novels, The Children Bob Moses Led (winner of the Hackney Award), Devil Dancer, and Blacksnake’s Path; a work of history, William Wells and the Struggle for the Old Northwest (winner of two Golden Spur Awards); and a collection of interviews, Conversations with Robert Stone.   www.williamheathbooks.com

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