The disappearance of writing from school classrooms feels to me like such a cataclysmic tragedy for the human race, it’s hard not to imagine a parallel between this sadness, and thousands in villages being crushed under buildings in a natural disaster. I thought about this yesterday when during a social studies class at work the teacher brought it to our attention that the disappearance of writing always precedes the end of a civilization, and I couldn’t stop myself from sharing with the class that I believe that the end of record keeping signals the end of self-worth and imagination for a people, not to mention comprehension and empathy, that without writing, distraction and nonsense prose would take over as the primary mode of communication, and that eventually logic and critical thinking could no longer be employed by a consciousness hyper-focused on ending meaning and replacing sentences with feeling, with the mass extinction idea of unconscious self-destruction. I suppose being a highly-educated and yet, sparsely published poet, especially these days, I’m a little closer to a normalized sense of rejection than most, and so, I’ve had time to grow my pessimism, while I continue to hammer asteroid like thoughts that echo back across the eternity in my head like a bad dream that won’t completely land. But I think I’m also a middle-aged son now, without a family for decades, either because of death, disappearance, or design, so, the whole disappearance of writing thing kind of hits me there too, so it wouldn’t be unexpected that I project my last man on earth sense of loneliness onto this subject. Not to be even more of a Debbie downer, but it makes me terribly sad to see, weekly, one child after another, hold themselves back from wielding imagination each time they are asked to write something and they must immediately open their Chromebook to sneak a sports clip or You Tube rant as some dominant, Sisyphus-like response to the absurdity of daily life and protest against the sufficiency of written communication to make them drip oxytocin and meet their basic needs. If you want to know what I think, I think this humanity incinerating choice makes me feel horribly absent, and, to me, seems to offer a glimpse of the end of not just meaning, but the world.