Polar bears in Churchill wait long summer days
ravenous and white until wind blows cold and sideways
from the north, freezing the sea so they can venture out to hunt.
White giant bears with galaxy eyes and wet black noses
locate seals through ice and thirty feet of arctic water,
then feast when pups come up for air, scarlet food on ice.
If winter comes too late, Polar Bear fathers eat their children,
which is why we dream of them.
In Manitoba, they stalk delicious goblins in plastic costumes
on Halloween. Sometimes one snatches a wee child trudging
from house to house in sub-zero wind that is too hot for Polar bears.
They roll to cool their bellies and would loosen the collars
of their white fur coats if they could do it. If, in this hot
and furious hunger, Polar Bears venture too close to town
or reach for meat set out in traps at the dump,
they end up in bear jail which is three Quonset huts
divided into stalls with giant bears inside them.
They’ll get no food until the ice comes.
They wake from wild dreams of flying, from drug induced stupor.
They fly through skies full of hammock nets hung from helicopters
that pick up polar bears and transport them away from humans
who do not wish to become food, though many wear bear caps.
Polar bears in Churchill don’t seem to hate us though,
come close enough to inhale the fascinating scent of tourists
in glass vehicles whose tires are as tall a bear standing up.
Polar bears are curious, come to look at humans
who come to look at bears, to shoot film, spend money,
take pictures, sip scotch in heated cabins late at night —
two species nose to nose with little sense
of the sacred names either whispers in the night.
©Susan Bright, 9/11/04
Susan Bright is the author of nineteen books of poetry. She is the editor of Plain View Press which since 1975 has published one-hundred-and-fifty books. Her work as a poet, publisher, activist and educator has taken her all over the United States and abroad. Her most recent book, The Layers of Our Seeing, is a collection of poetry, photographs and essays about peace done in collaboration with photographer Alan Pogue and Middle Eastern journalist, Muna Hamzeh
Bare Truth Watch
Talking points Memo has a list of the RNC's chairman's mistatements yesterday and ends with this comment.
"What this country will end up needing is something like a Truth and Reconciliation Commission because what the country needs is not so much for particular people to go to jail but for the lies and the lies to cover up earlier lies to stop. The country can't get past what has happened or move forward until we can get the truth on the table, deal with it and move on. "
Meanwhile, the Secretary of state has called for a certain country to "stop exporting violence and start importing democracy".
Oz is attending a Renewable Energy Conference in Houston with Matthew Simmons, the Peak Oil expert.
Full Report later.
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