Silver Influenza

Sean Wiebe


Waddling in contamination
with my orange safety vest on
I measure how we piss waste
along and wish words

could remove the toxin.
Elevated levels of mercury
monkey out of the water
climbing the food chain

now in the blood of insects
and so on to the birds
that eat them. Not a lot
of people thought up

the chain to moths or spiders
as if by regulation negligence
could be confined to a single
ecosystem, as if the soil

could be hoodwinked.  
Baby mouths contained more
mercury than the fish
in my water bucket. Always

open, an escape clause to shelter
us. Even at low concentrations
naivety is spreading,
pampers your conscience

contaminated insects too
alarming to be true, reproductive
failure too far down river
for you to imagine mercury

creeping out of the water
taking wing and making
its way to the tasty
morsels on your table.