a glacier that used to

compassion basia says  we tend to not
hear/use that word, especially in academia
but it’s still important

i always, always
take my students to the sewage treatment plant
she also says
three hundred pounds basia describes
the ice books whose pages feature
seeds of native species
embedded as text
they are gifted to the rivers
so they can float downstream
and help revegetate,
that notion of ephemerality is important
to me, we’re all only here for
a short time

i also make gifts for all of my participants;
small clay canteens or packets of seeds
she shows us a glacier that used
to spill down the mountainside
and would go on for a while off the screen
(of the slide we’re looking at)
and now it is just a cap
on the peak
courtney talks about stress levels
measured in the dna of the baleen 
of whales and how the stress had
significantly lowered after 9-11
most likely because of the limited number
of hulking ships that were allowed passage then

the stark white/blue streaks
of the magpie that bobbe spots
in a cottonwood across the river
before it flies to the side we’re on
and balances in the top of a juniper

that particular (though too-early) spring softness
lilting along
in the air
a certain lightness
a certain sense of hope

the song we sing as we walk 
away from the river
along the muddy ground softened
by snowmelt, the smell of tobacco
sweet on the tips of my fingers

the rio chiquito bobbe says is now
water street. i’d like to paint it

the river dried up but it wasn’t gone
is one of the things i’m compelled to

write down that bobbe said
there were still cottonwood trees there
the orange (or is it tangerine)
that doug brings us
cut up in a way i’ve never seen before,
skin petaled and blooming
while the sweet juicy wedges nest lightly

this is not ok  i say holding up my phone
and sortof shaking it as emphasis
(and by this  i mean, the very fact that
i am participating in the procurement
of conflict minerals, the production of
plastics, the waste of the water it takes
to make this machine)
and bobbe points to the lightbulb
illuminated above us and says
this is also not ok about the coal
power that is bringing us this glow
from the water world:
A worshipper spits water on a sword as he takes part in Hei Neak Ta, or procession of the spirits which marks the end of the celebration of the Lunar New Year for the Chinese community in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. – voice of america, day in photos


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