Not a list, not a poem, just a long, protracted sigh.

My contribution to Day 21 of Paul Brookes’ 30DaysWild challenge.

I think we all know what we as individuals can do to help slow down climate change, famine, floods and mass migration for the poorest populations in the world. It’s simply that most of us won’t do it unless we’re forced.

I was going to post a very short, non-exhaustive list, but I won’t. We all know it by heart. Nor will I write a poem about saving nature, because poetry makes not one iota of difference.

There’s nothing that’s impossible or even difficult in being reasonable and humane. It’s not fascist or Medieval to stop wasting resources. It is simply the plain truth that our throw away clothes are produced in sweat shops often by children, that abattoirs are hell on earth, that those floating luxury palaces destroy everything they come in contact with.

And it’s depressing that we would rather believe in hoaxes, irrational conspiracies and whataboutery than scientific fact. In the end, it all comes down to whether or not we care

and whether we want
the books we will read to our grandchildren
to have elephants and badgers
on the same page as unicorns.


Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

17 thoughts on “Not a list, not a poem, just a long, protracted sigh.”

  1. Here Jane humans are so lazy, deaf to the truth and too self obsessed to put themselves out. But we can’t give in we must just keep our voices loud out here in the wilderness.

  2. As ever your last lines press home the message – “elephants and badgers on the same page as unicorns” says it all. Do we want them to be mythical, do we want our grandchildren or their children to be mythical?

    1. People say, oh, but zoos, oh but theme parks, pets’ corners, Disney, as if that makes it okay to wipe out animal populations in the wild. As long as kids can have the touchy feely experience in the baby animal section of a zoo, it doesn’t matter that there are none left in the wild.
      You’re right. Children, as we understand the concept, might become a thing of the past very soon.

  3. It’s far beyond being depressing. I saw a friend yesterday whose husband has been doing research on oceans and she says he keeps looking for a sign of hope–somewhere, anywhere–but there is none. No one wants to be even slightly inconvenienced. But we are way beyond the point of slight now. (K)

    1. It seems to me that we are openly admitting we don’t care about how much animals suffer. They’re just born to be eaten, so what’s the problem? The sea is just for swimming in, so who cares if there in no life in it, anyway, sharks. As for accepting even a miniscule dip in comfort, that’s such a vote loser, no politician even dares suggest it.

  4. You had me at the title and I resonate with every weary word. This is my frustration: that governments are willfully not legislating needed changes because being re-elected matters more to them than the survival of those they were elected to serve. It is criminal negligance because, you are right, people wont sacrifice until they are made to do so. Dont even get me started on how corporations should be payinghefty taxes, not getting subsidies and should be made to clean up the messes they make. A weary sigh indeed. Here come more floods, heat domes and wildfires, while politicians speak meaningless words, Economy-babble, and stuff their paycheques into their bank accounts. Argh. The way animals are treated by humans remains my greatest sorrow. I cant bear it yet bear it I must.

    1. We’ve just had elections here, and the extreme right have done very well in my area. In fact, they swept the board. I know for a fact, that some of their greatest fans are also so-called animal rights supporters. They could have voted for a party that has placed animal rights and ecology high up on its platform yet they have chosen to vote for the crypto-fascists who have no programme whatsoever in favour of either animal rights or the environment, who are in hock to the agricultural and hunting lobbies up to the eyeballs. It makes me fume, and has lost me ‘friends’.

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