Lisa Mednick Powell

January 22 - TRASH!

Just about every day, we buy things knowing we will throw them away. Cans of sparkly beverages, boxes of tissues, plastic trash can liners, plastic jugs, cardboard cartons, paper cups of hot coffee and tea, canned food, plastic jars of cosmetics, hair pomade, jam--gasoline, cigars, you name it. We dispose of things all the time. Some things last longer in their containers, like gas in a tank or lipstick in a tube. Glass jars and bottles can be washed and re-used. But you get the idea. Does this make us insane as a society? There are still some places, like maybe the south of France, where you can go bring a bottle to the wine shop and get it filled and refilled (and refilled and refilled...), and some of the desert people (here and there) go to a main source and fill huge plastic cubes with water. Some of us use our own bags at the grocery store. (psssst....wanna really mess them up at Walmart? Bring a damn tote bag. Those of you who shop at Walmart will know what I mean. Though wally-world cashiers have it hard enough already I suppose...) What we are using up and causing to vanish are the resources that we use to make all of the disposable containers that we throw away. So today's topic is...TRASH! featuring A.R. Ammons and the New York Dolls (filmed at Max's, a club that no longer exists except in the memories of a few of us who played there and spent many an hour at Johnny Thunders shows...) Excerpt from garbage by A.R. Ammons. (garbage is a book-length poem that everyone should read.) "...............................................................the garbage spreader gets off his bulldozer and approaches the fire: he stares into it as into eternity, the burning edge of beginning and ending, the catalyst of going and becoming, and all thoughts of his paycheck and beerbelly, even all thoughts of his house and family and the long way he has come to be worthy of his watch, fall away, and he stands in the presence of the momentarily everlasting, the air about him sacrosanct, purged of the crawling vines and dense vegetation of desire, nothing between perception and consequence here: the arctic terns move away from the still machine and light strikes their wings in round, a fluttering, a whirling rose of wings, and it seems that terns’ slender wings and finely-tipped tails look so airy and yet so capable hat they must have been designed after angels or angels after them: the lizard family produced man in the winged air! man as what might be or might have been, neuter, guileless, a feathery hymn: the bulldozer man picks up a red bottle that turns green and purple in the light and pours out a few drops of stale wine, and yellowjackets burr in the bottle, sung drunk, the singing not even puzzled when he tosses the bottle way down the slopes, the still air being flown in in the bottle even as the bottle dives through the air! the bulldozer man thinks about that and concludes that everything is marvelous, what he should conclude and what everything is: on the deepdown slopes, he realizes, the light inside the bottle will, over the weeks, change the yellowjackets, unharmed, having left lost, not an aromatic vapor of wine left, the air percolating into and out of the neck as the sun’s heat rises and falls: all is one, one all: hallelujah: he gets back up on his bulldozer and shaking his locks backs the bulldozer up" ***** And now, Ladies and Gentleman, Mr. David Johansen and the NY DOLLS, live at Max's Kansas City: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8k2O7WVDHMA