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Synthesis/Regeneration 31   (Spring 2003)


Urban Harvest

Michael R. Allen,
Gateway Green Alliance

we enter the park, we find dead trees
or worse, no trees
as our crews cut them down
no relief of shade for us
nearby shoppers and sippers on
the fiberless Delmar & Euclid strips
perfect for new gates
and their twisted simulation
of the branches now lopped

what did we authorize?
clear-cutting the real that cannot
be bought and sold
using a theme
draining our lakes
moving our paths
our gates do not close
like sluice valves of economic desirability
we cannot defend the untouched

we line the remaining roads with cars
parked but not ticketed
set up events
set up tents
set up golf
set up Art
we cannot let ourselves glimpse
deforestation delimited
or golf course dreams
not contingent on sycamores

we drive back down McCausland, another
missing median tree unreplaced
no one person’s beauty
another cutting, crew breaking
after they’ve broken
watch actions taken in our name
set up our particleboard future

[18 apr 03]

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