Friday, July 3, 2015

poems: 4 for John

     John McCamant died May 6, 2015 at the age of 82.  See here.


1.  A rainbow of difficult flowers

                        for John McCamant

At a meeting of over a hundred, the gardener

sunflowers bending down their heads

in hot afternoons

faculty and students

spoke of Chile

before the hammering rain

against the CIA which murdered Allende

and disappeared so many

so many flowers

who would have thought


death would have undone

purple or gold potatoes

John said to his colleagues –

ripped from the soil

perhaps you will not vote


for winter

turning mountain soil

as Andean farmers

you will not oppose

the CIA   for murder



you will vote

orange seeds of the purple

against the distortion of what we do


I myself once

White Mountain Farm

believed distinguished papers

 mother grain

El Mercurio

the Times of Guatemala

that print

heads cut off

the opposite of the truth

2. Solace

Once when I was alone

the farmer had me over


fed me dinner from the garden

talked me

through the night

3.   Seed

John put me on to Vandana Shiva

Indian farmers cultivating a thousand 


against 6 corporations

like Inca quinoa farmers

sued them

Texas rice

whose curse

extinguishes basmatis

haunts those who would bring it



4.  The business

John’s farmer partner

raised cows as friends

slow eyes

shit plop ping

eating wild grass

but had to kill them

sold the beef

to be eaten

over the winter

by urban folks like me

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