learning the flowers



This dewdrop world
Is but a dewdrop world
And yet—

Kobayashi Issa




I want to tell what the forests were like
I will have to speak in a forgotten language.

-W.S. Merwin


Oh! kangaroos, sequins, chocolate sodas!
You really are beautiful! Pearls,
harmonicas, jujubes, aspirins! all
the stuff they’ve always talked about

still makes a poem a surprise!
These things are with us every day
even on beachheads and biers. They
do have meaning. They’re strong as rocks.

Frank O’Hara, “Today” 1950


The Only Surviving Recording of Virgina Woolf


“In summary, our current mainstay relationship with fish globally is one where we expose trillions of animals annually to injury and death for a ran ge of food and non-food reasons. We apply little or no basic welfare precautions to our use of these animals for our purposes, and we do so in the absence of certainty about whether they experience suffering, even though we know that if fish had a capacity to feel pain, then the level of suffering to which we expose them would be extraordinary. Moreover, we remain resistant to changing mainstay practices to allow for the possibility that fish might suffer—for example, by applying basic welfare precautions—because we perceive the costs (to ourselves) as too high. By any measure, this situation appears to lack justice; it can be rationalized only if one makes the arrogant assumption that humans have some unchallengeable prerogative to prevail over the lives of fish in a completely unfettered way.”

Fish and pain: The politics of doubt


“More than two-thirds of the planet is covered by water, and much of that liquid expanse is ungoverned and potentially ungovernable. Criminal enterprise has flourished in the breach. The global black market for seafood is worth more than $20 billion, and one in every five fish on American plates is caught illegally.”

“For Palau’s police, the catch — the far more elusive target — was the fishing companies who send these desperate men to sea to flout the law. But in a sense, even those bosses are bycatch, too, in a worldwide fishing economy where sanctioned corporations, far more than poachers, are stripping the oceans of life. To save Palau’s fish, and the world’s, the law and its enforcers need to bring an entire industrial system to heel: a mission that requires a level of international cooperation and political will that has yet to materialize.”

Palau vs. the Poachers