Blue River Face Timber Sale Unit Pt.1

…After the rain a fern in half shadow boasts globes of light like a rack of medals life has appointed us heroes

Blue River Face Timber Sale Unit Pt.2 A trip to this site to quickly account for home energy usage, carnivorous tendencies, travel.   But…

12,000 workers in the Qili port shipyards. 1.13 million people relocated to accommodate the Three Gorges Damn. 45,000 laboring in Egypt’s limestone quarries.

In China the average life expectancy is 75.2 years. Coal miners and metal miners, though, are expected to live 49 and 56 years, respectively -­‐ based on entering workforce at 15y.

How do we begin to account for those BEATs headphones those monster cables those Iphone earbuds those hair dryer cords? How to account for the mines and the dams and the rivers black with manufacturing effluent? And beyond those wounds how to account for the people who mine our diamond, our coal, our copper? What is that footprint?

Buddhism tells us that we are fundamental ignorant about the nature of existence, the most egregious oblivion being our illusion that we are separate beings. But Buddha was, in an unfortunate manner of speaking, pre-­‐Enlightenment, pre-­‐ individualism, pre-­‐phrenology, pre-­‐bellum, pre-­‐Darwin’s lovely take on women, pre-­‐ Jim crow, pre-­‐Nixon’s campaign. ((In other words, he had it easier)) We have centuries of programming to overcome. Perhaps through one lens we can make a quantum leap, makes history shudder where it shadows-­‐ Ecologically, we are intimates.



T. Geronimo Johnson is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and a former Stegner Fellow at Stanford. Johnson has taught writing at UC Berkeley, Stanford, the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, The Prague Summer Program, San Quentin, and elsewhere. His first novel, Hold it ‘til it Hurts, was a finalist for the 2013 PEN/Faulkner Award. Welcome to Braggsville, his second novel, follows four UC Berkeley students who stage a protest during a Civil War reenactment in the heart of Georgia.