N  a  p  a  l  m      H  e  a  l  t  h      S  p  a         R  e  p  o  r  t     2  0  0  3



War's First Week


The cakewalk

has become a bit sticky


some Iraqis have turned

their daisies


into rifles

& hand grenades


seems many

don't like tyrant Saddam


nor foreign invaders

dropping cruise missiles


and cluster bombs

In Basra the water supply


has been cut off

and we are seeing


the possibility

of humanitarian catastrophe


war should never

have been viewed


as a latenight poker game

initiated by those


too zealous

to send their own kids


into urban combat

It'll take millions of patriots


& internationalists

(truthfully the same folks)


to throw the lunatics

out the White House


Until then we are facing

more weekends from hell


as well more spring days

filled with thousands


marching down Broadway

for a democratic peace


This is one of the two

oldest stories on the planet


(both originating here)

Let the battle for ideas


replace those young corpses

growing cold under desert moons





To the Northern Winds July 4, 2002


Sitting in cabin kitchen with Vivian

meditating with eyes open

following breath out nostrils

the day clear and beautiful

but cold, and windy as hell


it's heaven up here in Canada's north country

no inkling of industrial air pollution

not another human being within 50 miles

just Vivian and I reenergizing our love

and daily nightly mercurial wanderings


forest dust blows from here through the hemisphere

it slips through the eyelid & the screen door

nests between the molars & under the tongue

it can make a nation crazy

or cause a dog to sit up and take notice


It's been a crazy fucking year

full of death and the fear that creates more death

full of heightened alerts & habitual nightmares

full of bedroom intruders dressed in terrorist beards

& talking busted syntax on the Pentagon's porch


O Northern Winds can you blow some uncommon sense

into our nation down below?

Can you wine & dine us this year with a cleansing tempest?

Can you whistle and make our giant egos disappear?

Can you help us elect a new president?


The terrorists have murdered innocent lives

and given America's insane right an unnatural gift

From up here where the winds howl

it's obvious nature abhors a fundamentalist judge

and the whole pyramid scheme of corporate theft


The Northern Winds blow the leaves hard

but take time off so the trunks can rest

We remember the World Wars and the inhuman slaughters

we recall the old famines and the new disease

yet have begun to build another dangerous century


Last night ravens flew figure 8's near the cabin, playing

in yr gusts. O Winds, we have learned to cross large continents

to embrace our love. Can you shake us out of our future-destroying

weaponry for a new start?  Tell the children:

another new century can begin whenever we choose.


(written in Alberta, Canada)



Playing Catch with Cracked Globes


The first thing to remember is bend at the knees & keep yr back

         relatively straight.

It could be a long day filled with leapfrogging pitfalls—

easy to throw out spinal discs or lose a wig in the wind.

Most important is learning the two-arms-underneath technique:

Let the globe come to you, breathe in slowly, feel torso expand,

follow yr breath out yr nostrils, winding its calm way through

         the wintry universe.

Visualize a cracked globe landing softly in your cupped palms

and whatever else you do, don't squeeze! Or shards will fly!

Anonymous millions have had throats slashed, parliaments


for such frivolous crimes as a too-tight grip, or turning away.


How return the globe to its sender depends on its age.

If built early, circa 140 B.C. Greece, by Crates of Mallus,

          better not flick your wrists.

Don't dig fingers in for a long throw, this globe stops time—
losing this one can incur the wrath of powerful gods no living
          human being remembers.

Such gods refused to stay still long enough to be mapped.

Or breaking this ultimate globe could be a sign fortune on

         its way—will you take such a gamble?

If the globe's from 1492, it is likely the oldest in existence.

Put the vast blue Atlantic southern hemisphere as it looked

         before transoceanic piracy

in yr throwing hand, raise it above your head  & hold until

         your sender is ready.

If necessary, wait frozen & careful all  night in that half-throwing


it's your butt on the line any time either of you, sender or catcher,

         drops this ball.


Stare closely like a kabbalist at the letters on yr globe & it will

         slowly reveal its codes,

its iconic, tectonic, temporal, and presentational techniques.

In what ways is your globe already out of date & yet also

         a compass for the future?

How does its cartography construct the world as well as

         reproduce it?

Did he or she who created this globe pre-plan where its initial

         cracks would appear?

Who agreed to draw its national borders in solid black marker

         rather than dotted gray lines?

What social and cultural features has the author left out by paying

         such close attention to proportion and typography?

Is this a Wolves of War globe, or a mapping of peaceful

         emigration routes?

How this globe reveal its historical contingency?

How are border cross-pollinations illuminated for a nation's

         internet connections?

Which regions are lost to the astronaut's eye on a hazy day?

Did this globe's creator sufficiently appreciate the value

         of a mercury-free River Nile?

Who decided to include those beautiful & hideous flags?

What company or political foundation funded the making

         of this globe anyway?


 Have your masking tape ready, your crazy glue, your double

         lines of epoxy,

steady your lavender candle to drip hot wax to cover up the

         smallest, freshest cracks.

Trace the open space from its ruptured beginning to end.

See if it passes through a country called East Timor, Zaire,

         Panama, USSR.

See if the East and West of Germany are divided, the North

         & South of Vietnam.

Does the globe say Israel and/or Palestine? How many asterisks

         appear next to the name Jerusalem?

Is Algeria independent yet? Is Bosnia its own nation?

Are no-fly zones still marked off in North & South of Iraq?

Under which flag does Hungary fly? Is there a sign saying

         whether its Jews have been placed on cattle cars yet?

How many  totalitarian regimes can you name touching at least

         one point in the breach?

Can you find any Native Americans on a 17th century

         European-made globe?

How does your globe assign responsibility for Africa's civil wars?

In 1966, a 95-year-old Parisian globe cracked all the way open

         to reveal an unhatched egg—

shake yr globe a little to see if there are any secret prizes inside.

Then you can decide whether to try silver duct tape or a

         futuristic glue,

or you can check www.repaircrackedglobes.com, but few

         international surfers will find exact answers there.


 If the crack runs anywhere within continental United States,

         you have a complicated task

in your open palms. You are looking at a country that has set

         examples of cultural freedom

and semi-democratic elections for much of the world, a country

         that helped erase the axis of fascism

from your three-dimensional mid-20th century map, that has

         built an unprecedented middle class

which doesn't look down often, that has committed & sponsored

         enough violence in five-plus centuries

to embarass mapmakers from the top pole to the bottom.

Look at three different globes from the 19th century—can you

         see how the numbers

of U.S. states and U.S.-claimed foreign terrorities increase?

Does your globe use “America” as shorthand for the U.S. of A.?

Feel the surface of the continent:  Can you sense the gorgeous

         Great Lakes, the magnificent Mississippi,

the majestic Rocky Mountains, the Grand Canyon wonder

         of the world?

Can you feel the dangerous radioactivity emanating from land

         lined with plutonium hair triggers?

If you are rubbing a cracked globe on your Nebraska rocking

         chair porch

remember that when you get too angry in Wichita another player

         shudders on her Angolan rocks.

Meditate on this knowledge for 48 hours and you will know

whether this is a globe that should be returned via overhand toss

         or bowling ball roll,

or perhaps one of those rare globes that can be drop-kicked

         from the White House lawn.


If yr globe was made during the new millennium it will be difficult

         to locate origins of the crack.

There are Al Qaeda volcanos capable of causing leaks anywhere.

There are Colombian army earthquakes, Chechnyan firestorms,

         religious wars baking in the Kashmirian sun,

burial grounds housing too many bodies in the Congolese streets,

AIDS spreading alarming rates in every nation with human

         populations indexed on the map.

There is a mountain below the Equator called IMF, a WTO River

         whose tributaries remain invisible.

There are oil tankers crossing oceans with unknown corporate logos,

tribal warlords and paramilitary death squads, homelessness

         & bone-thinning poverty.

The weather become too warm, the weapons too destructive

         and too many.

There are random subatomic pin pricks capable of carnage

         modern physics cannot yet explain.

Any of these could have cracked the globe you are holding.

Can you examine your globe and discern whether Lula has

         been elected president of Brazil?

This may be a globe with potential, perhaps even a globe

         worth tossing north?

Although it looks stationary as you hold it before you, arms

         underneath technique,

your globe is revolving at speeds too fast for humans to follow.

Ignore my earlier advice. In truth, no matter what method's

         been used thus far,

there has never been a foolproof way to send back

         a cracked globe

without smashing it to bits. But you have made the tough catch

         & must do something.

It will be difficult to invent a new way of returning it safely—

in times like these, the imagination is worth more than

         a thousand pair of hands.