SATURN’S CHILDREN

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For Elise Oliver

 

A nine year old girl somewhere far to the south

or south east of here, somewhere beneath

an African or an Asian sun,

is making bricks – packing clay into moulds,

all day, day after day. In her teens

she may bear children who luckily may live

long enough to also make bricks in the sun –

and may also officially exist.

She does not. Hers was one of tens of millions

of unregistered births, phantom boys and girls,

marked out for the very worst of wrongs

our ingenious species can commit.

We in the North and the West – with our

insatiate, unappeaseable consumption

of the earth itself – are not only

colonising the planet’s future,

but are devouring it.

 

 

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