Art and Literature for Africa and the World

Google me this,
you Ozymandian phalluses
rising from Lady Bird’s plantings:

who has done more—your Titans of Tech,
changing history with their (mis)information,
or one cosseted Southern woman,
caught up in the toils of a hardscrabble boy
from the hill country, but nonetheless
relentlessly persistent in her vision?

From a distance, your towers dominate,
but down here, almost in the water,
her little wilderness provides
heron and egret roosts,
turtle nurseries, cover
for a million bats or more
departing, in season,
on their nightly quest for corn moths—

a whole rich and fertile legacy
of urban biome that now,
uniting me with water,
earth, and gentle morning sky,
distinguishes my small vessel
from all the other plastic
floating in the lake.

Passing under the railway bridge,
I take the vibrant advice
of a graffiti artist: “BREATHE,”
remembering those who can’t now.

It is a prayer that the world
will not prove disposable.


Lorna Wood is a violinist and writer in Auburn, Alabama. Her poetry has appeared in Angel Rust (Best of the Net nominee), Coastal Shelf, Escape Wheel (great weather for MEDIA), and Poetry South (Pushcart nominee). She has also published fiction, creative nonfiction, and scholarly essays. Find out more at

Griet van der Meulen lives in a tiny village close to nature, hence her work deals with environmental issues, the precarious human condition, and how nature supports and sustains us spiritually, physically and emotionally.