Poetry: Two Scores from The Future by Willa Carroll

The Future:
Willa Carroll

Score for the Body as Last Frontier

Poachers prize the rosette pelt | bones are gold | on the black market | I put on the body | of this snow leopard | my eyes behind hers | scanning terrain | We pant across borders | Russia Mongolia China Tibet | Plush paws | doing twenty five miles a night | boreal forest to tundra to Himalayas | Preying on blue sheep in Nepal | not really blue | Sleeping on straw | dying of a virus | in a Nebraskan zoo | They say a glacier losing girth | has no income | permafrost spent too soon | Trickling muck | replaces the headwaters | Mekong Yangtze Yellow | rivers without mouths | never to taste the sea

Score for the Body as Time Machine

Rewind the sun | set back the burning clock | sweep debris into a moon | score a cluster of stars | Reenact plate tectonics | great oxygenations | Swim trilobite swim | as flowers precede the bees | as whales flunk back into the oceans | Mountains trending up | seas retreat | glaciers advance | We invent the kiss | record an inch of history | grease wheels | melt poles | Volcanoes wear down to nubs | buildings to braille | Nuclear waste | takes the time it takes | along with coral revival | & continental rifts | Decamp with the moon | in galactic drift | Dial down the sun | red giant | white dwarf | runaway star

Willa Carroll is the author of Nerve Chorus (The Word Works, 2018) and Demolition Suite (Split Rock Press, autumn of 2023). Her poems have appeared in AGNI, Poem-a-Day, The Slowdown, Tin House, and elsewhere. She won Narrative Magazine’s Third Annual Poetry Contest, Tupelo Quarterly’s TQ7 Poetry Prize, and the 2022 Split Rock Press Chapbook Competition. Her poetry videos and multimedia collaborations have been featured in Interim Poetics, Narrative Outloud, TriQuarterly, and several international film festivals. She was awarded Best Poetry Film at the 2021 International Migration And Environmental Film Festival. willacarroll.com.

Image: independent.co.uk

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