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Tipping Point by Wendy Haslam

Tipping Point Passed

Mind Tom, just stay on the path
watch out for holes now, don’t fall.
It’s dangerous out in the wind,
that’s why they’ve built that great wall.

This mute landscape once rang with gulls,
burrows jumped with long–eared beasts,
these cliffs, bereft of nests, run down
to where the sea otter no longer feeds.

Hold my hand tightly just here
we’d better not stay out too long.
Tell me what you learnt today,
sing me your flying song.

The skies once were full of albatross,
They flew the oceans of this world right round
with their wings like huge feathered sails
but in the fishing nets they’ve all drowned.

Are you growling like a polar bear?
Oh you drew a bear today?
Tell me what your teacher said.
Be careful, the edge is falling away.

Under solid ice, the great white bears,
space-walked through crystal seas.
They needed the cold to catch their prey,
so starved when the temperature rose.

I think I can see rain clouds again.
Yes, even though it’s very warm.
Don’t worry we won’t drown in a flood
like so many in that last storm.

It was the trees that made it all as one,
they stitched the land to the sky;
so many greens, full of song each spring;
the reds roared as the year went by.

Did you do the jumping in school,
puddles, leaves and mud today?
It’s wonderful how teacher does that,
we used to use real leaves for play.

Let’s take off our oxygen suits,
go on inside to cool down.
Granddad has all done remembering
when the world had more colours than brown.