For Uli Schreiber

The flooding of Passau, now unpreventable
– what’s its value at the Climate Summit,
what does it gain us?
Faster even than the Alpine
glaciers melt, we barter droughts
in Australia, California wildfires,
floods in Bangladesh
and the submersion of the isle of Tuvalu
and turn them to profit mass. Global warming,
global business. The sky is green
over Lima on the last day
of the conference, so luminous is the sea,
and the harbor of Ancon is crossed
by murmurations of starlings, at whose sight
one such as Auden would think: we each must love,
no matter whom, or all will die, though Auden,
thinking this too drastic, then wrote instead:
We must love one another and die.


(Translation: Isabel Fargo Cole)

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