The Bonobos

Life comes, life goes, and not much changes.
The pecking order re-arranges.
One day the wretched human race
Will quit this Earth and in its place,
In half a million years or so,
We'll have the ruling bonobo.

This happy ape is now well-known
For almost no testosterone.
Eschewing violence and force
It solves disputes by intercourse,
Explaining why you can't efface
The knowing smile upon its face.

Bonobos seldom prowl the trees
Fighting over territories,
Or seek aggression therapy
Swinging through the canopy.
But like the gentle turtledove
It cooes, and ends up making love.

The bonobos watched with canny sense
The foolish homo sapiens
With gay abandon multiply,
Polluting earth and sea and sky,
And casually wondering why
They choked to death as time went by.

And thus they died, alas, un-mourned,
Still deaf to warnings they had scorned.
In centuries the Earth recovered.
In time the bonobos discovered
The vacuum left by Man's demise,
And started to extemporize.

Down from the trees in which they dwelt
They stood upright to scour the veldt.
Their speech developed from a grunt,
They sallied forth with clubs to hunt.
And (this the current bonobo loathes)
They soon got used to wearing clothes.

Then came the fire and then the wheel.
Soon came spears and iron and steel.
Then they dreamt up government
In forms they hadn't really meant.
Developers emerged as from the murk,
Made loads of dosh without much work.

And facile folks became adroit
At how to bargain and exploit.
Relationships, once amatory
Began to be perfunctory.
Life became all slap and dash,
And rush and stress and making cash.

Of course by now had come the priest,
Who promised heaven when deceased,
Provided they refused to pet
And cuddle everyone they met.
"This undermines our family life.
Do it in private with your wife

Not knowing who your father was
Can have some benefits because
It makes the group a family,
Reducing petty rivalry.
Thus, a once-relaxed society
Was now consumed with jealousy.

Fights broke out between the males
And gossip ruled, and tattletales.
And as the population grew
Great wars occurred as if on cue.
Competition (never done)
Now spread to almost everyone.

The rich got rich the poor got poor
Some weak apes starved and furthermore
Where once there had been space for all
Great cities grew and with them sprawl.
The air got foul, the water rank
The ghettoes and barrios stank.

Now there were no knowing smiles
No forest lush for miles and miles,
No sensitivity, no love
Just acid rain from up above.
And as the centuries went by
Most wondered what they'd lost, and why.