Poems From the Porch 17
2020 Bring It On!
The number of natural disasters to cause devastation across the globe in 2019 was exceptional.
Unrelenting wildfires, explosive volcanoes, withering drought, and historic floods created havoc, destruction and loss of life. Across the world, climate change and global warming is tightening its grip on a seemingly complacent population, and Mother Nature is starting to get angry!
The year ended with the tragic eruption of the White Island volcano in New Zealand and then with the devastating bushfires across much of Australia (that are still burning.) Being optimistic, the longer the country goes without rain the closer we must be to getting significant downpours, and with the cyclone season not to far away that could actually come to fruition and even culminate in floods.
Well, I am confident 2020 will be a better year, and hopefully, I am not proved wrong. Welcome to the porch, and 2020, bring it on!
Update: In Hindsight
Well, we need to be careful what we say. I take back those words “2020 Bring It On! Little did I know when I wrote that how the Coronavirus COVID-19 would change the world as we know it. How wrong I was that 2020 couldn’t get any worse. Let’s just hope that by the end of the year we have the virus under control and life can return to some form of normal.
"Perhaps you might like to include a poem about the homeless who are never far from my thoughts at this time of year. Thank you."
Lorna, I must apologise for not posting this poem before Christmas. For some reason I overlooked it but, fortunately, it isn't much too late and some of us have just finished eating left-overs and the decorations are, in fact, still up.
In 2013 I wrote I invited other writers to participate in writing a poem with this same theme: Poem Without an End
We think sometimes that poverty is only being hungry, naked and homeless. The poverty of being unwanted, unloved and uncared for is the greatest poverty. We must start in our own homes to remedy this kind of poverty— Mother Teresa, Missionary and Saint.
Beneath the Baubles
Friends and family gather
To feast and exchange gifts.
This is the festive season
So spirits all should lift.
The tree is decorated
And no expense is spared.
Christmas lights are glowing,
Goodwill and love is shared.
But this is surface glitter
On show for you and me,
Beneath the baubles and the tinsel
Are things that we don't see.
Like the homeless in the subways,
And huddled on the street,
Or sleeping on a park bench,
With nothing much to eat.
There are people with no families
Who spend Christmas all alone,
No greeting cards or presents,
No "Merry Christmas" on the phone.
So while you slice the turkey,
Or cut up the Christmas ham,
Just ask, "What would Jesus do?"
Don't perpetuate this sham. (Maybe invite a homeless man.)
"I would like a poem Devika Primić. Please."
This is the first time I have been asked by someone to write a poem about them. I admit I wasn't really comfortable with it, but there has to be a first time for everything. Devika, I hope you enjoy this.
I believe that writing opens the mind to all kinds of experiences and when you believe you become hopeful in life— Devika Primić
Meet Devika Primić
Devika is a HubPages friend
Of Indian descent,
Though South Africa is where she from,
Where her childhood was spent.
She moved away from all she knew,
Her family, culture, friends,
To a new life in Croatia
And the challenges that presents.
She writes about the culture shock
And her struggles to adapt,
Also about relationships
And keeping them intact.
A book on Indian spices
Is in her repertoire,
Folk tales from around the world,
And her advice on love.
Devika writes with passion
And always from the heart,
A prolific HubPages author,
And as a reader plays her part.
Always quick to comment
And acknowledge what she reads,
With the kindness and encouragement
That every writer needs.
"I'm glad you've finally had some rain though I doubt it's enough yet. Having been in that area in February last, I'm mourning for all the wildlife and vegetation which lifted my heart...
Great poems, John. How about something on droughts or floods?"
Ann, these subjects are so topical at the moment with what's happening in the world. I had to write about them.
The risk of increased intensity and increased frequency of fires is real, it is already occurring and it will get worse under climate change— Professor David Karoly, Melbourne University
Australia, Land of Drought, Fire, and Flood
The land is scorched and drying,
Most plants and trees are dead,
Wildlife too are perishing
In this time of mounting dread.
Australia's in the midst of a drought,
It's not rained for a year.
Bushfires raging through the states,
Communities cower in fear.
Many livestock can't be moved,
Sadly, left to die.
Such devastation never seen,
it makes you want to cry.
But, even as Australia burns
The cyclone season nears.
February is the month
That holds the greatest fears.
But this year may be different,
It will be a welcome change.
The winds may not be pleasant
But we'll all embrace the rain.
For cyclones usually lead to floods
That saturate the land,
And should extinguish all the fires
That still burn out of hand.
"I think the UK, caught up in our election, is similarly immune to President Trump's impeachment proceedings... I wondered if you might consider writing a poem about Brexit some time please?"
I admit I had some trouble with this, Liz. I haven't really been following Brexit either, but I heard that Boris Johnson's victory in the recent election was confirmation that the people want it to go through sooner than later. I did a little research and at least came up with something for you.
“On June 23rd 2016 we took the opportunity to abandon this sinking ship captained by failed politicians and unelected crooks. But we’ll still trade, we’ll still holiday abroad and America will still ask us to stand Shoulder-to-Shoulder with them in ‘their’ fight against terrorism.”— Karl Wiggins, Gunpowder Soup
To Brexit or Not to Brexit?
British exit - Brexit,
Let's leave the EU now.
The referendum voted "Yes,"
May had to work out how.
But people's votes don't matter much,
Politicians, they decide,
Whatever makes it difficult
For the other side.
Supposed to exit before now,
But MPs knocked it back.
Something called "Irish backstop"
Has proved a real setback.
But under Boris Johnson
The backstop's been replaced,
So on the 31st of January
The exit should take place.
Same Time and Place Next Week
Thank you for visiting the porch. I hope to see you all again next week when the poems will be those requested by Audrey Hunt, Rosina S Khan, and Bill Holland.
Remember, if you have any requests for poetry you'd like me to write just let me know in comments here or shoot me an email. Bye for now.
© 2020 John Hansen