“plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose”
“the more things change, the more they stay the same,”
(Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr, Les Guêpes satirical journal, 1849)
Everything has an unsteady centre of mass,
though dead elephants may stay standing,
unlike humans. A cockroach can live
for up to nine days after losing its head.
Aljazeera finds 1000 Palestinians murdered
by Israelis misleading. Across the globe,
scientists reckon there are 400,000 flowering plants,
and 19 major religions. A grandmother in Gaza
tells a young woman, “Be grateful you lost
just five – 14 of mine are gone.” Jews attacked
in Britain, France, Germany… In Luhansk,
225,000 flee Ukraine-rained bombs.
1,750 refugees drown in four months of 2015.
Russian air strikes are launched against Syria.
99.9% of all animals that have ever lived
are now extinct. Bulletproof vests, windshield wipers
and laser printers were invented by women.
My son asks why the orchid he hasn’t watered
is dying. His fingers stroke the dead leaves,
I turn on the tap. At this instant, God knows
how many different nations and beliefs
are praying. I tell him to take care of our roots.