The Late Edition

by Kenneth Nichols


The biggest story in the history of mankind
Will never make the papers.
Kids can’t deliver their route
In a nuclear winter.

Should a meteor come
To wipe the slate clean,
The temporary survivors will have weightier concerns
Than documenting sources and turning their copy in
to dead editors.

The last baseball scores,
Final dispatches from regions of petty strife,
Curtain-dropping theatre reviews,
Will be lost — cast from memory to galactic ether.

The only way to be remembered fondly
By whatever cares to look ages after
Is to hope the late edition
Has small-type headlines,
No unpleasant pictures—

May mankind’s last solid breath
Be a slow news day.


Copyright © 2007 by Kenneth Nichols

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