There used to be a limpid lake
Home to the finest birds you’d find.
We’d watch their glory till daybreak.
But now those days are far behind.

I used to hear the bullfrogs croak
Before the pond was quarantined.
We left the woods in haze and smoke
And all the swallows stayed behind.

The goldfish in the pristine stream,
The sparkling stars that brightly shined
Now seem like the glimpse of a dream.
A world that we have left behind.

We sang our ruinous rhapsody
And wrecked the earth to serve mankind.
I guess this is the tragedy
That “noble” progress leaves behind.

We knew the language of the deer
When nature was still unconfined.
But now they flee from us in fear.
Is this what we’re leaving behind?

For how much more are we waiting?
Mother earth has wounds we must bind.
The sickly sky’s suffocating.
Let’s mend the earth we’ll leave behind.


Niloufar Behrooz is a PhD student of English Literature at University of Isfahan, Iran. She is a poet, writer, musician, and language instructor. Her work has appeared in Literary Hatchet, Litro Magazine, Presence, Paper Wasp, Parody and elsewhere. You can find her on Instagram @niloufarbehrooz

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2 Responses

  1. Kathy F.

    Very accurate though, fortunately, there are still areas of pristine wilderness left here, in Canada.

  2. Lorna Davis

    “We sang our ruinous rhapsody and wrecked the Earth to serve mankind” – that is, sadly, a perfect description. Very beautifully written. This poem reminds me of the saying “We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.”


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