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This is our legacy

How will they curse us,
the 3rd, 4th generations,
the ones that survive
the deaths we left them?

How could we explain
the world on fire, species
wiped out daily, oceans
with more plastic than fish?

That we let a corrupt man
stomp refugees fleeing
rape, murder and hunger
that we let him set blazes

no one could put out.
We saw the cliff ahead
We were well warned
We took everyone over.

That was how our world
ended, in lies and greed
vast and numerous maggots
dining on the corpse of hope.

Marge Piercy is the author of many books of poetry, most recently Made in Detroit.

2019, Commentary, Volume 71, Issue 06 (November 2019)
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