WARNING: I Brake for Plastic Shopping Bags

by Carl Santoro

There used to be a time

when the most graceful

part in a tree was it's branches.

As I drive around the island

this Spring I now see

instead of brown wood

oozing bright green buds...

weathered and torn plastic,

innocent butterflies of pollution

trapped and entangled,

hopelessly trying to

free themselves with the help

of the next breeze.

They call to me with

frantic waves and staccato twists.

Many times resembling

birds frozen in flight,

pierced by an unforgiving web.

April '94

Alan Watts: "For the adept in ZEN is one who manages to be human with the same artless grace and absence of inner conflict with which a tree is a tree."