Creative Writing News

Ursa Minor: Poetry inspired by real Northern news

“Northern Ontario First Nation vows to use its own laws to control traditional lands.” CBC. Aug 9, 2016.

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trees get cut down to build roads

that’s what trees are for, the spokesman said

to the empty room

which was full of the sound

of people clapping

encore encore encore! people shouted

from their homes, half-listening

from the speakers of their radios, the television

talking about falling oil prices, discounts on stereos, the latest

strain of anti-biotic resistant flesh-eating bacteria

in the background


further more, the spokesman said, rivers

are for damning and stones

are for splitting open


his suit

was very fine, in his left fist he held

environmental reports and legal documents

on which nothing was written so he waved them around

and shouted

you can’t stop progress

or progressive conservative neo-liberalism


outside the door to the press room

a handful of men stood murmuring

but none of that belongs to you!

were caught on camera, it was reported

to security, who came

and took them away


you needn’t have any concerns

the spokesman said

my company is at the leading edge of ecological innovation

this very second, a team of highly trained political engineers are designing

solar panels from beer cans

emissions lowering chemicals from paper trails

and highways out of tears


this joke was the cue

to straighten his tie

the spokesman straightened his tie

when nobody laughed

they played a laugh track

so that it would sound as if they did

Photo: istockphoto/Gromit702

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