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By Ashleylister @ashleylister
What a great word, peripheral, meaning variously: auxiliary, external, insignificant, of secondary importance, on the border/edge/fringe/margin, outlying. Be that as it may, as a theme it has not found favour with my blogging compadres this week, for they've all passed on it. Too open-ended, possibly? Too abstract and unfocussed?
Here's my take. I first joined Friends Of The Earth a year after that organisation was founded in 1969. I was prompted to do so after watching a documentary on BBC2 about the likely effects on the planet of the escalating rush towards the globalisation of consumerism and industrialisation. The dire consequences of increased burning of fossil fuels combined with massive deforestation, over-fishing of the seas, over-use of chemicals in intensive farming and increased air pollution from an exponential rise in vehicle traffic were clearly laid out in the modelling presented by the researchers. Their vision of the future was frighteningly stark. That was fifty years ago.
It was completely ignored by 99.99% of the world, dismissed as the doom-mongering of a lunatic fringe, an insignificant concern, a peripheral issue if you will. Some of those astute enough to realize there may be truth in the prognosis chose to believe that mankind would be clever enough to stay one step ahead, to find solutions to all the problems (s)he might be creating on the relentless drive called progress. Others, powerful with vested interests in coal, gas and oil, waged billion-dollar cynical campaigns to debunk the warnings of the climate scientists and for forty years those lies worked. 
It's like we'd all been blinkered. Peripherally, acid rain was falling, forest fires were burning, skies and oceans were warming but we chose not to see or not to care, for the central vision was consumerist: bigger this, better that, faster the other, never had it so good. The bad stuff was just a blur. Even now, when the evidence is surely incontrovertible, the profligacy goes on. 
As ice-caps melt and Greece burns, this new poem is very much a work-in-progress...
Grey RosesStill lies the one who gave us birth.Immensely pretty in her youth, andbountiful as only a mother can be,she seems absurdly small, used upand fragile beyond belief in death.
Third degree burns. It's been a long,hot summer, and she never stooda chance once selfishness prevailed.We should have done more, or less,because she tried in vain to warn us.
You'd hardly call it a fit memorial,this ceremony in a charred church,all of us grouped consumed in grief,too-late remorse for such lack of faithin the true worth of our inheritance.
Selfish orphans all, we're cowardly,bandits, rapists of her loins, none fitto speak her name. We've also little left to grace her in her coffin excepta bunch of withered, ashen blooms.
Here's gray roses for you then, andtears for all the world because whoknew the end of everything would come so swiftly and so soon? Or wewould be the instruments of doom?Peripheral
Thanks for reading, S ;-) Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to Facebook

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