If the trees screamed When their mothers were cut down If they screamed so loudly The chainsaws were rendered silent If the plants screamed When we dug up the soil If they screamed so loudly We could hear it through the cement If the fish screamed When we poisoned the water If they screamed so loudly Turning a tap would lead to cacophony If the birds screamed When we darkened the air If they screamed so loudly Every wind brought their cry If the animals screamed Not only as they lined up For the hammer, the axe, the knife But for the rape, the prisons, the torture If those first on this land Left their blood on our hands If we were scarred so deeply We could never forget Would we act the same? If the hens wailed in their cages If the sows sobbed in their stalls If the cows dripped tears instead of milk If the horses lay down on race tracks If black lives really mattered Would we still think the same? And if we could speak tree Would we build houses of wood? And if we could speak worm Would we concrete the land? And if we could speak turtle Would we throw out our plastic? And if we could speak bee Would we spray all our crops? Would we, still?
From: Vol.09 N.01 – A Poetics of Rights
Would we, still?
by Rees Campbell