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  • Writer's pictureStaci-lee Sherwood

ANNIE AND THE LEGACY OF PLASTIC - a poem about our impact on nature

Updated: Dec 17, 2022

She greeted the morning with a yawn

Wings stretched out to catch the wind

As she soared through the air

Her eyes glazed the land for food

Annie the Anhinga was a bird

Whose story is tragically common

She had a mate

She had a home

She had freedom

They had their courtship, made their nest

Hoping like all parents

The best for their chicks

Life went on daily as planned

The pair tended to their chicks

Best they could in a hostile world

They did not create

She went out one morning to find food

But instead found plastic

She returned to the nest

But had no food

The hungry chicks pecked at her beak

Begging for her to feed them

They tried to bite the plastic

hanging from her beak.

We tried in vain to capture and save her

For two long days

We watched her struggle

To scrap away the danger

She knew laid ahead

Her wings took her far away

And out of our reach

We never saw her again

But her story does not end there

Her mate could not tend to all three chicks

And made the unbearable choice of letting the youngest go

A slow end came for the little Anhinga

Death was a welcome relief to her pain

Her siblings were fed and survived

This is the legacy of plastic

We have left for others

Her life and death serve as a cautionary tale

and we need to pay attention.

- Staci-lee Sherwood

Also published on Fevers of the mind on November 28, 2022

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