This but trash #poetry #earthweal

This but trash
‘tis but trash, this
thing for which you wish:
leave it, it is choking up
the Earth, your desire
for more, always more
you have 
you give
Abandon it:
burn bright
the blessed
light of

© Experimentsinfiction 2021, All Rights Reserved

Written for earthweal

The pandemic and resultant lockdowns certainly got me thinking about how much junk I have in my life that I don’t need. About how much crap it is possible to buy without really needing it. Once buying crap for the sake of it was no longer an option, I started thinking about how to live differently. I read How bad are Bananas? and There is no Planet B. I watched Seaspiracy. I’ve switched to a vegan diet, and I’m trying to reduce packaging, but it’s like a tidal wave.

One thing I find useful is not to grocery shop until the fridge is almost empty. I make sure I use up everything and that way there is no waste. I buy what I need when I need it, and only stock up on preserved and dried foods. These are just small changes, and a drop in the global ocean of waste, but talking about them can make a difference also. Never underestimate ‘the ripple effect…’

Sharing with earthweal. It’s also worth listening to Caliban’s words in The Tempest, written some four centuries ago…

TRINCULO      [ Sees the clothes .] O King Stephano! O peer! O worthy Stephano! Look what a wardrobe here is for thee!
CALIBAN      Let it alone, thou fool; it is but trash.
TRINCULO      O ho, monster; we know what belongs to a frippery! O King Stephano! [ Puts on a garment .] STEPHANO      Put off that gown, Trinculo. By this hand, I’ll have that gown.
TRINCULO      Thy grace shall have it.
CALIBAN The dropsy drown this fool! What do you mean To dote thus on such luggage? Let’t alone…. 

(Act 4, Scene 1, lines 221-229)

34 thoughts on “This but trash #poetry #earthweal

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      1. Lol. We managed to get close to vegetarian for a while but when COVID hit and schooling from home, it all fell apart (although our lockdown was brief compared to many places). And I haven’t found the energy to go back. It was thankless cooking meals which were poorly received. So well done you, just stomping your feet and insisting.

      2. I just don’t have the time, energy or inclination to cook a meal selection to suit everyone! They get meat at school so I don’t think they’re missing out on a balanced diet!

      3. Ah. Our kids get what we give them at school – mostly sandwiches, at the moment mostly Vegemite. For a while I was cooking them pizzas every Sunday night. But they got bored of that eventually.

  1. The corporate perfection of satisfied desire – a convenience of delivery resulting in mountains of trash — that’s the will which must die thanks to our refusal of it. Yes, we are but Trinculo and and Stephano, coursing the magic isle into a pond of piss. -b

  2. I love the concept your words Ingrid … I think I’ve basic a miimalist and simple life … material inanimate things have never meant much to me,

    “Everything in nature is resurrection.”
    William Butler Yeats

    “I believe… that our memories are part of one great memory, the memory of Nature herself”.
    William Butler Yeats

  3. I was just reading about the 4 big plastic manufacturers, and how totally unregulated they are. It’s impossible to shop for food without encountering too much plastic…that can’t come from consumers, that needs to be government regulation. They should not be allowed to make plastic that isn’t biodegradable. But the money gods will never allow it.
    My older daughter has a friend who works with recycling, and metal is actually the most recyclable packaging. Glass can easily be recycled, but it’s not profitable, so it’s not. But still, it’s preferable to plastic.(sigh) (K)

    1. I can’t help but suspect there’s a link between the amount of plastic thrown at us, and the fact that it’s a byproduct of the oil industry…

  4. Great piece of writing. Great conversation. I suppose it is how we individually and collectively turn our love of Earth and place into action and lifestyle. I agree a lot of waste is corporate responsibility I but I also think we as consumers keep the corporates in business.

    1. I think we all bear some responsibility and we all have to take action, which includes pressuring the corporations to take action!

  5. You and I are basically on the same path. My children went vegan first and shamed me into at least vegetarianism. It’s hard to do without a bit of cheese but if there wasn’t any to buy, I wouldn’t be tearing my hair.

    1. It’s actually pretty easy to get locally farmed cheese and milk here which wouldn’t be too bad, but I’ve heard that dairy can aggravate PMDD, so I’m cutting it out for now to see how that goes.

      1. It’s the dairy industry that fuels the veal trade, cows constantly pregnant, taking babies from them as soon as they’re born etc etc. As my vegan daughters explained to me, just stopping eating meat doesn’t stop the cruelty unless you stop eating dairy too. I’m trying. Hard though.

      2. Dairy has a huge carbon footprint as well. So I suppose vegan is the way to go if you can stand it. But not eating cheese in France does seem a hard call!

      3. We don’t eat much cheese on its own except for Pecorino and occasionally a bit of Roquefort but I use Parmesan, Mozzarella and Ricotta in cooking. Hard to get out of traditional cuisine.

  6. I eat a lot of green vegetables, salad greens, and berries that come in plastic clamshells. They are supposed to be recyclable, and I put them in recycling, but there are rumors that the recycling center just puts them in the landfill. It is not a pleasant thought!

    Ingrid, thank you for posting the great poem that reminds us that we are burying ourselves in trash! <3 Take care!

    1. Yes, all of these recycling categories as suspect because the rules aren’t clear. I looked it up and most ‘Cat 7’ plastics go to landfill in most places, so I don’t even try to recycle these, but separate them from the recyclable plastics.

  7. Such good changes. More people are making them now too. Over packaging is one of my pet peeves, along with single use plastics. Loved both poem and your notes. And your thoughtful life changes.

    1. I am encouraged that so many people are beginning to see the wisdom in making the change. We are facing an existential crisis. If only our diets were all we needed to change!

  8. The Tempest is one of my favourite plays, Ingrid, and I love how you’ve tapped into your inner Caliban, the true earth child. I too am working through the crap I’ve accumulated, slowly but surely. We are still vegetarian – like Jane, I couldn’t live without cheese – but we eat vegan at least once a week and we have been reducing packaging in whatever ways we can. Funnily enough, we’re doing the same thing – not grocery shopping until the fridge is almost empty.

    1. I’m mostly cutting out dairy for health reasons, but I would buy locally produced dairy otherwise ( there’s even a ‘mlekomat’ here where you can buy milk from local farmers 😊)

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