Anthology: The Rising and Falling Tides

Featured image: “The Human Footprint”, Justin Park

The second piece in my ocean poetry project is called The Rising and Falling Tides. I wrote this short anthology in early 2016, and was awarded second place and a silver award in the 2016 From the Bowseat Ocean Awareness Contest.

Before you is an anthology which will hopefully send you riding the waves of a rocky journey smothered with plastic pollution.

First, you will roam the rising tide and the comparisons to the stages of life. This idea stemmed from the shift in the ocean’s appearance through the past years which is portrayed through the references to a growing child. The plastic pollution is seen in the actions of the ocean of varying ages, how it trembles, how it mourns.

Next, you will experience the falling tide, sadness and negligence which is utilised to create a change in attitude.

Finally, ‘She Holds Me Tightly’ presents you with a final strong hit of water, astonishing facts and a story of me in the ocean and the questions I want to ask the world. I used background information from the Future Problem Solving topic, ‘Ocean Soup’ which I researched in Year 6. The topic left a lasting impression on me, the pictures and thoughts embedded into my mind.

These poems shift in dynamic as you read, signalling the rising and falling tides. All we need is a dynamic change in our actions, to realise how we are impacting the ocean, and to make a change. This is our environment, it’s up to us to deal with it. If we pollute it, leaving it unsifted through our thoughts, sitting stagnant at the top, there are no second chances. This is my plea on behalf of our ocean.

Anthology: The Rising and Falling Tides

This is the Aging Ocean

She is the baby in blue,
with her face of innocence
and a longing for her voice
to be heard.

She is a trembling child,
the smell of driftwood
on her knees.

She is twelve years old,
realising the lie that
surrounds her life.
The plastic human lie.

She is a mourning mother,
holding the carcasses
of her children,
the albatrosses choked by plastic.

She is old now,
greying hair and half-moon glasses,
wrinkled elephant skin.
She looks at herself in the reflection,
and knows there is no future left
for the girl who never had a voice.

From her heart to mine

She has the heart of
a glowing splint,
a faint diminishing glow.

She has the skin
pierced with fragmented plastic,
scars she didn’t cause.

I forgot to care for her.
I forgot to listen to her call.
I remember the plastic I left behind.

She has the legs of
a crippled soldier,
unable to avoid the plastic trap.

She has the hands of
an innocent criminal,
cuffed and restrained by plastic bottles.

I forgot to care for her.
I forgot to listen to her call.
I remember the plastic I left behind.

I have her blood on my hands.
I have her heart in mine.

I remember to care for her.
I remember to listen to her call.
There is no plastic I left behind.

She Holds Me Tightly

I wade through the ocean,
she holds me tightly.

I hold my breath and listen.
She yearns for a voice to remind us,
that 100,000 marine animals
are dying each year
at the hands of our plastic.

If only we thought
to ask the ocean,
before releasing the
380 billion plastic bags
in the USA each year.
The urban tumbleweeds.

If only we thought
to ask the ocean,
and think about the consequences
and outcomes of our actions.

A 1.25 inch fish
with our 84 pieces of plastic.
A fish who cannot eat
with a body full of plastic.
A disrupted food chain
caused by us.

I wade through the ocean,
cleaning up our mess.

I wade through the ocean,
she holds me tightly.

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