The Endless Newsreel

watching news or news watching, it’s all the same
crisis, year after year, changing face
day after day, we wade through
grasping at straws,

crisis —
year after year, changing face
pandemic or epidemic, it’s all the same
lonely and contagious virus infecting the soul.

changing face —
year after year, crisis
climate change or changed climate, it’s all the same
burning world, drowning world, starving world, rich world.

year after year —
war or conflict, it’s all the same
innocent lives lost in both attacks and counter-attacks,
and this month a year ago, war erupted in Sudan – forgotten news.

day after day —
a perpetual state of grief,
collective and personal through the lens
of our individual worlds and haunting daily concerns.

crisis —
there’s no time for an oxygen mask
art must fight complex systemic injustices,
standing on social media’s shaky ground, without support.

changing face —
expecting, blaming, grudging and hurting
we show up guarded, wearing our invisible armours
only to talk about weather, for we crave human connection.

crisis —
endless newsreel is not imagination
but a reality as we cling to hope up in flames,
for humans possess a unique skill to both create and destroy.

day after day —
broken and ruptured, we wait for another ration
for how are we to know when the terminator
is finally at our doorstep!

news watching or watching news, it’s all the same
changing face, year after year, crisis
day after day, we trudge
grasping at straws,

Prompt 21. Watching the news, for Write Right @Thotpurge

PS. Featured Image created using Gencraft.

Khaya Ronkainen
Khaya Ronkainen is a writer, poet and creative professional. Her blog focuses on all things poetry and creative nonfiction.


  1. This is such a powerful piece of writing! My attention was held for every line, and I could feel each scene as I made my water from stanza to stanza.

    If we allow it to, news will kill us.

  2. Strong poem and absolutely true… we’ve got to the point where so many theatres of conflict are completely ignored and then we’re talking about weather and gardens… how normal and acceptable that has become while there is a “burning world, drowning world, starving world, rich world.”

  3. Thank you Tre. I’m so glad you could feel each scene. And you are correct, we need to take news in small doses…

  4. Talk about an elephant in the room! That said, I understand the overwhelm and fatigue that leads to opting for small talk, there’s so much going on in our modern world…*sigh

  5. Excellent poetic reflection on our times, Khaya.
    The Endless Newsreel itself reveals that Mankind sadly does not ‘learn from one’s mistakes’ and often does not care to change…Perhaps that is the basic state of human nature, but life cries out to rise above this!
    Due to ‘advanced’ technology, these days the focus seems to be on that slice of human nature to the point that I fear younger generations may lose hope. As an older person, I feel strongly to help them not lose hope.
    Like you say, it’s all the more important for us (he)artists to keep on doing our (he)art. Individuals taking small steps does make a difference!

  6. Poignant observations and well-crafted poem, Khaya. Your last line sums it up with a powerful tone. 👏🏻

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