To a Californian Friend

Michael Peach

When sit I midst the fumes and noise that fill
My flat from traffic, fires and roaring planes,
Or see, when walking, persons idly spill
Their garbage in the city’s parks and lanes;
When read I that our future lies on Mars,
Or contemplate the simple, sordid truth
That peace to philistines means faster cars,
I feel despair for green, unguided youth.
At times like these the only way, I find,
To stop myself from giving up the ghost –
Or, at the least, from losing grip on mind –
Is think of you at work on distant coast.
++Indeed, my friend, how gallant be your scope:
++ To plant young Redwoods is an act of hope.

26 July 1992

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