Poems by Dan Howell

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The Condemned

by Dan Howell

From Canary Winter 2012-13

Dan lives in the Town Branch watershed in the Heart of the Bluegrass in the commonwealth of Kentucky, which has more miles of running water than any state other than Alaska.

How painful to think that the cheetah could disappear forever
by the next generation the pretty seahorse and maybe the honeybee
elm and oak and painful to know what’s missing already a million
passenger pigeons in a single flock a flying island miles of buffalo
acres of elephants iridescent dolphins in shoals in the old Aegean
and soon we can say just name something else going or dead and gone
graceful or not “useful”or not creature forest desert prairie river ocean
air Yes we’re all stupid and gifted and vicious and kind and finally
condemned when driven to do far too much with the world or to it
while typically we learn barely enough to start mourning

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