Tag Archives: poetry

2007 Logos

by Scott T. Starbuck

When I complain to the old man 
about rising gas prices,
he says “I want $10 a gallon.”

“Why?” is the obvious question.
“Because I love birds,” he says.

At the time, I thought him insane
but now I think most everyone else is.


Starbuck is a co-creative writing coordinator at San Diego Mesa College, was a Friends of William Stafford Scholar at the “Speak Truth to Power” Fellowship of Reconciliation Seabeck Conference, an Artsmith Fellow on Orcas Island, writer-in-residence at the Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, and 2016 PLAYA climate-change resident in poetry. His ecoblog, Trees, Fish, and Dreams, with audio poems, is at riverseek.blogspot.com.

Scott T. Starbuck is a poet/activist. His books are Industrial Oz: Ecopoems, noted by Bill McKibben as “rousing, needling, haunting,” Hawk on Wire: Ecopoems, available at Fomite Press (preferred) and Amazon.

How We Stopped Corporate Psychopaths from Cooking Planet Earth

For Mary DeMocker

By Scott T. Starbuck

We planted trees everywhere at once.
Facebook posted only the words “Go outside.”

“Destroy Your Television Day” grew more popular 
than Xmas and the 4th of July.

Children of execs saw themselves as global citizen
sand despite every temptation and distraction

disowned their wayward parents.
ExxonMobil became BlueOrbSolar.

Each country committed to saving 
one thing from extinction — them.

People wondered why it took so long.


Starbuck is a co-creative writing coordinator at San Diego Mesa College, was a Friends of William Stafford Scholar at the “Speak Truth to Power” Fellowship of Reconciliation Seabeck Conference, an Artsmith Fellow on Orcas Island, writer-in-residence at the Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, and 2016 PLAYA climate-change resident in poetry. His ecoblog, Trees, Fish, and Dreams, with audio poems, is at riverseek.blogspot.com.

Scott T. Starbuck is a poet/activist. His books are Industrial Oz: Ecopoems, noted by Bill McKibben as “rousing, needling, haunting,” Hawk on Wire: Ecopoems, available at Fomite Press (preferred) and Amazon.

Thoughts at the End of Empire

by Scott T. Starbuck

It’s possible future generations will destroy
our art, literature, music, film,
and corporations, in bitterness
for allowing ecosystem collapse,

and mistrust for how many leaders
were distracted, apathetic, selfish
ignorant, or insane with money and power.

It’s possible future generations will redefine
family, community, work, value, happiness,
life, dirt, success.

It’s possible education will change
from locking children in boxes
to getting them outside in tide pools,
rivers, creeks, deserts, mountains

and their community of remaining
mammals, birds, fish, amphibians,
invertebrates, reptiles, plants, trees.

It’s also possible, based on our collective
behavior, there won’t be future generations.


Starbuck is a co-creative writing coordinator at San Diego Mesa College, was a Friends of William Stafford Scholar at the “Speak Truth to Power” Fellowship of Reconciliation Seabeck Conference, an Artsmith Fellow on Orcas Island, writer-in-residence at the Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, and 2016 PLAYA climate-change resident in poetry. His ecoblog, Trees, Fish, and Dreams, with audio poems, is at riverseek.blogspot.com.

Scott T. Starbuck is a poet/activist. His books are Industrial Oz: Ecopoems, noted by Bill McKibben as “rousing, needling, haunting,” Hawk on Wire: Ecopoems, available at Fomite Press (preferred) and Amazon.

Wind Spirit

by Scott T. Starbuck

Wind Spirit said to the man, “I will ask a question, and each day you give the wrong answer,
I will take a finger. The question is hard, requiring much reflection, and self-purification.
I don’t know how many fingers you will lose. That is up to you.
How will you save the community of species on Earth?”

“The question is too hard,” protested the man.

“It has been ordained,” said Wind Spirit, “and cannot be changed. I will return tomorrow at noon.”

The man knew coyote was smart so he went to ask, but all coyotes were dead.

He knew king salmon had a bright red soul so he went to ask, but all king salmon were dead.

He knew steelhead trout could leap waterfalls so he went to ask, but all steelhead trout were dead.

He knew eagle had unerring vision so he went to ask, but all eagles were dead.

Trembling, he knew cougar could be invisible, but all cougars were dead.

In ten days, the man lost all his fingers.

This is a parable written on what remains of the ancient Pleistocene Lake Chewaucan now called Summer Lake, Oregon.

Published in the Amsterdam Quarterly
Writing and art in Amsterdam, the Netherlands and the world

Starbuck is a co-creative writing coordinator at San Diego Mesa College, was a Friends of William Stafford Scholar at the “Speak Truth to Power” Fellowship of Reconciliation Seabeck Conference, an Artsmith Fellow on Orcas Island, writer-in-residence at the Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, and 2016 PLAYA climate-change resident in poetry. His ecoblog, Trees, Fish, and Dreams, with audio poems, is at riverseek.blogspot.com.

Scott T. Starbuck is a poet/activist. His books are Industrial Oz: Ecopoems, noted by Bill McKibben as “rousing, needling, haunting,” Hawk on Wire: Ecopoems, available at Fomite Press (preferred) and Amazon.