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Chard deNiord: Dispatch from Gaia

“The question of landing somewhere did not occur earlier to the peoples who had decided to “modernize” the planet.”  Bruno Latour


Mother’s singing to us now in a loud soft voice, 

“Put your ear to the air and ground and sea.”


Mother’s singing in the brush, “You are me, You are me. You are me.” 


Mother’s shedding her veils across the Earth.


Mother’s starting her sentences with the word “unless.”


Mother’s wearing a tattered dress.


Mother’s running a temperature.


Mother’s echoing on the porch of our ears, 

“The small rain down can rain.”


Mother’s weeping sour tears.


Mother’s howling, “It’s late, my dears.”


Mother’s chirping, “You’re so many now. What to do?”  


Mother’s soloing in the overstory, 

“Love’s for nothing if you can’t save me.”


Mother’s barking runes in the alley:

Nothing never turns to something when already there’s far too much.

Wonder lives in the dirt like a worm.

Filaments and wings rhyme in the air.

Every creature is stranger and therefore far more beautiful

And original than anything anyone could ever imagine.


Mother’s soughing in the breeze, “I’m waiting to hear.”


Mother’s writing time tables on the board of sky and then erasing them.


Mother’s splashing Rorschachs in the clouds, each one of which translates, 

“This is the age of necessity, my darlings, this very second.”  


Mother’s yipping in her sleep, then saying nothing when she wakes.


Mother’s growling, “You’ve swelled a progress to its tipping point.”


Mother’s twinkling from the stars to regard her from afar.


Mother’s cawing, “You must do what seems impossible now, 

but you’ve done it before.”


“Mother’s peeping, “I’m miraculous, I’m miraculous, I’m miraculous…”


Mother’s writing indelibly on water: 

“If you don’t lament the Pyrenean Ibyx, the passenger pigeon,

the stellar’s sea cow, the western black rhinoceros, the dodo,

the quagga, the pinta island tortoise you’ll have no heart at all

in the end to save yourselves.” 


Mother’s cooing so sweetly, “You must imagine, imagine, imagine

in order to start.”


Mother’s hooting, “Science is not political! Not political! Not political!”


Mother’s speaking in so many languages that are nonetheless one.


Mother’s quacking and chirping and barking and purring and growling and braying and snorting and yodeling and keening and grunting and laughing and hissing and screaming and whispering.


Mother’s speaking silently in every language: listen.

Copyright 2019 Chard deNiord. The author read this poem at the Feverish World Symposium in the fall of 2018 as part of his introduction to Bruno Latour’s keynote speech/presentation.

Steam rising from the Carpathian Mountains. Source: The Odyssey Online.

2 comments on “Chard deNiord: Dispatch from Gaia

  1. Sydney Lea
    May 12, 2019

    Fabulous, Chard. Utterly original and beautifully rendered. Bravo!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sally deNiord
    May 12, 2019

    Mother Earth…. all inclusive!
    A very powerful poem Chard!
    Thank you

    Liked by 1 person

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