Big wheel keep on turning #poetry #earthweal

Big wheel keep on turning…
Turbines spinning
spitting out clouds and carbon chains
sealing our fate in the sky
inside
I’m giddy with the turbulence
I pause to think
how lucky am I?
to be flying, reluctantly yet voluntarily
from one safe destination to another
flying, rather than fleeing
yet I’m as guilty as anyone
and once the carbon cost is tallied up
we’ll all be fleeing
with nowhere left to run.

Big wheel keep on turning…
The turntable in my dad’s house
was still working
I spun some vinyl music from my parents’ days
and told the kids about it
analogic sound
a museum-piece
even the tape wheels have ceased to spin
CDs too, and yet
we still have music
layers of the past converted into soundwaves
like rock-carved memories of
distant ancestral days.

Big wheel keep on turning…
train wheels
and buses and taxi rides home
if public transport is a way to save the masses
then transport networks have a long, long way to go
Proud Mary keep on burning
all that oil for diesel
keep the wheels of industry alive
lifeblood of our global networks, yet
we have to learn a new way to survive
rollin’ on a river
of dreams
take me back
to the dreamtime
when we truly understood
what this life means.

© 2021 experimentsinfiction.com. All Rights Reserved.

Written for earthweal

Brendan has titled this week’s challenge ‘big wheels turning.’ I borrowed some of the ideas from his prompt to write this poem, also drawing on my recent trip to the UK and of course, with that title, I couldn’t help but think of the song…

43 thoughts on “Big wheel keep on turning #poetry #earthweal

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      1. Yes, it’s very sad to see it all unfolding. My husband went to Afghanistan right after 9/11 and now 20 years later to see all the good progress coming undone so rapidly is horrible.

      2. Yes, I hope Biden can clean up the mess even if we have to send even more troops in. Can’t just leave it worse off there, too many people sacrificed their lives.

    1. Who knows – but I think perhaps they could! I was also thinking of our ancestors who understood how to live in harmony with the natural world.

      1. I don’t think we do actually. I think believing we own the earth has caused a lot of the problems we see today. But it is our responsibility to try and fix them!

  1. So much to think about here, Ingrid.
    Despite all the tragic and horrible things you mention, I liked the image of you playing oldies on a turntable for your sons.

  2. A really well-thought roll on wheels of progress. You wove a fascinating series. The song fits well — Proud Mary was a steam-powered tugboat that ferried prisoners from New York to Sing Sing. Look where it got us.

    1. Most of the steamboats in the Lake District have been converted to diesel – I’m sure the same would have happened to Proud Mary if she were still rolling…

  3. Great poem Ingrid and powerful lines!

    “Big wheel keep on turning…
    train wheels
    and buses and taxi rides home
    if public transport is a way to save the masses
    then transport networks have a long, long way to go
    Proud Mary keep on burning
    all that oil for diesel
    keep the wheels of industry alive
    lifeblood of our global networks, yet
    we have to learn a new way to survive
    rollin’ on a rive’

    I do love that song though!💖💖

  4. Ingrid, So many things that go round and round are featured in this clever post: modern wind turbines, antiquated vinyl records, fossil fuel-powered vehicles, and the stirring nostalgic song,”Proud Mary,”

    This beguiling post delivers a powerful message: Fossil fuel-powered vehicles, including steamboats, are as outdated as vinyl records and old songs. Though fossil fuels helped us to make progress in the past, clean energy, like wind turbines, is what we need for the future.

    I love this post! <3

  5. We are all a little giddy with the turbulence of this crazy ride we are on. A really good write – love all the balancing of the looking back and looking forward. And so many many wheels within wheels. And I love the lyrics weaving through. they were very top of mind for me too when i read Brendan’s essay.

  6. Do you think we idolise the past? Were we just more naive but no more considerate? Mr Worms watches a lot of history documentaries and it seems that society after society used up its available resources and then died out or moved on. I read a children’s book suggesting that Australian Aboriginal people were mindful of waste and resource abuse and they were here for 60,000 years before white people invaded so perhaps there are some groups who truly respect the environment they live in. But I am curious. It feels like our troubles began with the industrial revolution but perhaps that was only this particular set of problems which have inadvertently threatened all life on the planet, not just a pocket. Okay perhaps inadvertent is a bit generous. Anyway, sorry for the rant. Your poem is definitely thought provoking and a lovely use of the “turning wheels” prompt.

    1. It’s an interesting question. I was thinking of First Nation peoples who still, today, seem to understand much better than us the need for balance in nature (which includes us). Maybe it’s simply a case of for every perceived ‘advance’ there is a trade-off. Easter Island is a perfect example of what is happening now on a much smaller scale. Perhaps we’ll never know the answer, but I think a greater respect for nature and balance on our part is long overdue.

  7. I especially resonate with old music on the turntable. It SOUNDED better on vinyl, to me, than it does on all these tekky devices. There was such anticipation in putting a new LP on, setting the needle down just right.

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