April 6 — Can trash be beautiful?


I was meeting with some people yesterday and the topic of relentless on-campus trash came up;  same stories — throw-aways from MacDonalds, and soon enough, Burger King,  cigarette butts, plastic grocery bags caught in spring tree branches.  Like . . . .  Stuff and more Stuff !  Trash often feels so inevitable that ignoring can look like the sane alternative to ranting.   But some artists and poets think otherwise and create evocative, well-crafted statements about our throw-away habits.  Some years ago the Milwaukee Museum created a large special exibit on American cities.  As with many special exhibits you followed a pre-designed path through the artifacts  — traffic lights,  bus stops,  parking lots,  creative new designs for the street-faces of buildings etc. urban designs each with its role and purpose. . . .  and then you round a corner in the exhibit pathway and encounter a very large pile of urban trash;  my memory suggests that the pile was c. 20 feet across and 12-15 feet high, randomly assorted stuff, just there . . . BAM !    The trash exhibit, I read somewhere, annoyed, even outraged, museum goers.  But I bet no one ever forgot it;  a masterful exhibit therefore.

So, as a tip of my hat to the people with whom I was trash talking yesterday, here are two  pretty cool poems.  If you want more, go to http://hellopoetry.com/words/7179/trash/poems/.  Some poems here I love, some I think are a little weak.  These two I love.    Enjoy this middle day of the work week.


john sj

Today’s Posts

Feb 25, 2015

its funny how
you wanted to
take my heart
away from me
and now you’re
just throwing
it away like
your old cds
(n.b., I can’t seem to find the name of the poet on the site)

Poets, Shakespeare and Trash
A poet must read equal amounts
of trash and Shakespeare to learn
how to distinguish between the two.

Attributed to:
βέƦẙḽ Dṏṽ the Smartass Rabbi
Jul 4, 2014


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