Monday, October 24, 2005

Eating garbage, birds, Everyone with Lungs

Ok. So I like Juliana Spahr's new book This Collection of Everyone with Lungs. And I like "Gentle Now, Don't Add to Heartache." Maybe I shall attempt to say something coherent about it. Them.

But for now I'm only thinking about the cover. I didn't immediately notice that it's not of a landscape but a garbage dump.

This reminds me of a picture from the most recent issue of National Geographic. There was a picture of a six-month old Laysan albatross chick in the outer Hawaiian Islands who starved to death because its stomach was full of cigarette lighters, pump-top sprayers, nut shells, shotgun shell, broken clothespins, and hundreds of plastic bits. Trash that gets trapped in mid-ocean gyres gets eaten by adults and then regurgitated to chicks. "It's rare now to see one of these masses that doesn't contain marine debris. Starvation associated with marine debris is a significant cause of death in chicks that don't fledge." (NG, October 2005, p. 86)

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