He stood, sentry like, part of the desertified
landscape, and watched a small cloud
on the horizon, willing the curving shape
to bring salvation to his people and then
saw it melt away. The moment gone. Still,
he stood in the shade of the hostile sun.
She watched the food plants lovingly sown
shoot to life and then shrivel, becoming dust,
and still she watched to see in the distance
a sign, any sign of the black boiling clouds
that amass and spill, washing away the fear
of another month or year stealing their hope.
They too watched black clouds turn away,
and another day comes and goes and still
the rain, promised by a weatherman fails
to arrive. Instead, a few drops that dry before
a thirsty land can feel its moisture, then still
more days and clouds break their promises.
and hope shrivels like the desiccated roots.
Every morning they look out at the barrenness,
cheered by a cloud or two, too soon dissipated,
depression returns and tears are the only wet
as the green landscape has been seared by
a drought and for the first time they feel
the true aching for teeming rain for weeks,
and to understand another’s need is not
just for a storm to bring back the grass but
to feed their weakened children, who are
sufferers of the injustice of the changing
nature of climate absorbing killing carbon.