First posted in May of 2018. Revised.
Ten thousand years from today
there will still be equinoxes and
ocean currents. Most mountains
will look identical from a distance —
less snow on the peaks, perhaps;
certainly the glaciers will be gone,
but the jagged horizon will be the same
and that which is highest will still be highest.
There will still be beaches. They will still look
like beaches, although they’ll be in different places
and it may not be pleasant to stare too deeply
into what makes up the sand.
Trees, yes; flowers, yes. Creeper bushes
and stinging nettles, yes; creeping insects
and stinging beetles, yes. From the dunes
beings will be seen leaping in the ocean
near shore. They may no longer bear any name
we would know. Language itself may or may not last,
even if people do. If people have survived,
they will have to have changed.
Instead of naming what they see, they will instead
have listened and learned what other beings
call themselves. To survive,
they will have had to learn that —
and as for the God they imagined
gave them the power, the glory,
the dominion: who knows where He
will be, if anywhere at all. Instead
of Him there may be Her. Instead
of Her there may be Them. Instead
of Them there may be None, or
if Something Of All Of That is left
it may be shrunken, cowering
among the rotted rocks of obsolete
foundations, pleading for someone
to empower it again in a voice none will hear.