justice cascade

riding down one side of the florida street canyon
and up the other
unavoidable
en route to balboa park
and the thing that makes it all worth it is
on the struggle up
if there has been rain
and even sometimes if there hasn’t
the spring lushness and
the rainforest (home) smell

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justice cascade
is what the guest speaker calls it
when justice is served
(in other words:
the narrative of what really happened
has been exposed and admitted to)
and how it sometimes chainreactions
setting off other justices around the world

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how yesterday
the guy at the coffeeshop said
don’t worry, it’s biodegradable
when i asked for a for here cup for the iced tea
what he doesn’t understand is that first of all:
nothing biodegrades when there’s no oxygen flow
which is what usually happens in a landfill
and secondly: plastic single-use things (biodegradable or not)
are on my profane list
and not profane in the punk rock way
but profane as in opposite of sacred

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speaking of profane
the fancy footwork of guatemala’s army and national police in 1983:
slicing ears off
pulling nails out of fingers
slashing throats of
‘the subversives’
(those who wanted to be treated as equals
those who had been pushed down the furthest
including one man whose ‘subversiveness’ was
to gather funeral money from his community
when on of the members died or
his energizing and organizing to bring plumbing into
the shack-town his community lived in)
what strikes me
is how much closer
these folks are
with their dead
than we (western world/’developed’ country) ever have a chance to be
if you can, you must watch this film
and then this one
or in reverse order

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how the woman walking up the aisle and i
smile at each other
like we know each other
(her mouth almost formed around the word ‘hey/hi/hello’
my eyes beaming back)
though we don’t
and maybe it takes her a longer time to realize it
than i

_______

one mitten at home
i pedal
one bare hand gripping the handlebar

_______

at florida and cross-street
four way stop sign
drivers wave me on
from either direction

_______

the slice of that pie chart
keeps coming back
how the circle was all the water
and the 1% wedge of it
was all the drinkable/usable water
and how sometimes it feels hard to plan for the future
as if this kind of mundanity
(not to be confused w/ modernity)
will continue much longer
parking spots
water bottles 3 gulps big
10 kinds of waterproof mascara
overtime/lunch breaks
calorie burning
made in china, mexico, indonesia
matching iphones
our pet electronics/digitronics
updated windows
updated carpeting
updated landscape
antibacterial hand soap posted at every intersection of hallways
shopping in pajamas
working in pajamas
sunscreen
coconut water in a can
ikea
flat screen tvs as light up menus in the burger king on campus
flat screen tvs angled to offer updates/headlines that no one looks at
flat screen tvs when something like a chalkboard or ticker tape is too passe
(REALLY?  A FLAT SCREEN MENU? IS THAT NECESSARY?)
flat screen tvs that will eventually be obsolete and replaced by the newest so that all these will get shipped to india where children under twelve will pick apart the panels, bust up the toxic screens for flecks of precious metal
chiquita business mixed in international politics
double-wide baby strollers
trash island
death by neti pot
which isn’t about the neti pot at all
but really about the water in it
how quickly we forget about
the crack in the nuclear reactors
and how long we
entangled in torment
wonder why cancer
why our bodies twist where they do
the technologies/medications
that haven’t been around long enough
to know the repercussions
the language that has been assigned to our bodies
and the medications assigned to our assigned bodies as if
we’ve been relocated
outside of our skin
toothbrushes (offense #1, the handle made of plastic)
with the blue stripe in it
that eventually fades
to tell you its time to buy a new one
and then, the plastic device that holds the floss
BECAUSE OUR FINGERS HAVE FAILED? ARE FAILING?
now the desire to leave a legacy
fulfilled