Here on Optimism Street

Existing now – empty stretches of wide road
barren lots, detritus of industrial decay
telephone poles and power lines shedding insulation
in black peeling strips like sunburned asps
lounging on defoliated branches
all is waste and ruin –
desolation is the golden coastal city,
but in the hope that springs naively
out of the artist’s brush grows change
and forty foot tall trees lining the lanes
brimful of bicyclists and pedestrians
mothers pushing strollers
building of brick defeat
replaced by glittering glass
as if the sea has been dragged inland
like a tsunami wall frozen before breaking
gleaming in the eyes of all the happy people
in their revitalized ghetto, smiling
in the shade cast by fir pine canopies
where birds tweet and squirrels twitter
eager Yorkies pulling on the limits of the leash
gone are the wires crisscrossing the sky
gone is the graffiti and murderous glint
in the skinhead cholo’s bloodshot cheek
here then is the future
our streets of optimism born from colored pencils and paint
ready and waiting for those yet to crown
into a life of depleted resources
a world diminished in biodiversity
a planet warming past points of no return
on unmapped oceans – here there be dragons
breathing gasses and smog into the choking atmosphere
that blankets the fracked landscapes and dustbowls
what we leave to them is less
what we leave to them is a condition of critical collapse
what we leave to them is Raphus cucullatus on the rotisserie
slowly rotating on its skewered axis
beautifully browning
tender and tasty
that’s the picture we leave them of us
to carry in their wallets
Your Loving Ancestors


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