H e a r t   S o n s   &   H e a r t   D a u g h t e r s   of   A l l e n   G i n s b e r g

N a p a l m   H e a l t h   S p a :   R e p o r t   2 0 1 4 :   A r c h i v e s   E d i t i o n






Brown Fields


o waste incinerator crowned

with blinking beacon red and round

your chimney smokes without a sound


they say these brown fields are a land

where nothing beautiful may stand

a ruined bog of muck and sand


by ocean’s touch, a tainted well

owned by the CEOs from hell

who never buy what they can’t sell


they forge the laws with racist tools

they bend us with these deadly rules

& smother children in the schools


the blue claw crab of Arthur Kill

is poisoned from our garbage fill

with mercury and mutant gill


along the marshy moonlit streams

the pipes and steam of human dreams

birds cry out their restless screams


brown fields are an ancient way

of egret, geese and salted hay

where children yet may come and play


clear primeval native paths

to summer dance and clambake laughs

& spare us Wankan Tanka’s wraths


how we extinguished all the fires

the burning tiers of toxic tires

was once the proof of our desires


accomplished this, again oppressed

we found a home, but dispossessed

incinerators do not rest


we cannot trust the long suspense

of technologic evidence

but only stand & make defense –

eternal love’s intelligence



[Originally published in NHS 1995, http://www.poetspath.com/napalm/nhs95/index.html#21.]