Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Message in the Bottles

Action taken during the International Festival of Poetry in Granada, Nicaragua. Palmer Fishman joined a renegade group of young poets who broke into the parade of the Established Poets. During the course of the parage Palmer invited children, ancianos, waiters, and passersby to scribble a short poem or prayer for Lake Nicaragua, the beautiful polluted body of water that was the destination of the parade. She put all the poems inside the plastic bottles. Walking right in front of her were the candidates for Miss Nicaragua from Esteli, Diriamba, Ticuantepe, etc, prompting several gawkers to conclude that Palmer Fishman must be the candidate from La Chureca, the dump.

The parade reached the lakeshore just before sunset. Palmer and her fearless friends convinced government officials to allow us access to their very long pier, and even provided a gun-toting guard to carry the globe of bottles on his head. By now the globe flashed red and white from within, like and ambulance. With the wind blowing and the sun setting we walked to the very very end, where Palmer hurled the flickering globe into the water, an offering to Lago Cocibolca. Looking for all the world like a fallen UFO, the wind and waves carried the globe of garbage back to the crowd on the beach.

You can try to throw your garbage away, but it always comes back to you.

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