fifty years after Silent Spring...

one president (not the one
Oprah said is the one)

that depends on what the meaning of the word is
is, and this comes to mind when
I am reminded that the one

only Chinese friends of a certain age say now was
the one is there on the back cover of the pocket paperback
edition of Silent Spring that has been on my shelf

for four decades saying this
decade (that is to say the seventies)
must be. it is

literally now
or never,

he says some years before 9 august 1974,
when i remember yet another president
lying about military necessity. there is

nothing new under the sun. and what better proof could there be
that it is all connected? a specter is
haunting us, has been

a long time. man can
hardly even recognize
the devils of his own creation,

and the devil you know, you know...
time is, but there is no.
the obligation

to endure gives us the right to no.
i have been trying to tell myself that
the man who brought organo

phosphates into the everyday
bellum omnium contra omnes
must not be related because

of the a, no
o with an umlaut
and i wash my hands

of him. it was
the fragility of the shells
that touched me as a child

when i thought i saw through glass
darkly. and it comes to mind as
i watch a young man spray

Roundup on an expanse of grass
behind Hillel House. what was
it Hillel said before that other

rabbi was
thrust into  the
spotlight? if i am not
for myself who will be?
and if i am for myself alone...?

Rachel, they say,
was a prophet
who knew

there comes a time

when silence is

there comes

a time


the time is

there comes a time

when mountain flowers are in wild bloom
she giggles in all the color
and every morning

first bird sings the world

as though the world depended on it.

so primitive a science has armed itself
with the most modern and terrible
weapons, and in turning

we are we
are we are we are
the other people we have

met the enemy
and we is

turning and turning and turning
toward bethlehem to be born
Rachel Carson and Her Book That Changed the World by Laurie Lawlor, illustrated by Laura Beingessner. 

(ISBN: 978-0-8234-2370-5 $16.95) Holiday House, NY Ages 6-10/Picture book/32 pages/April 2012 

This new, accessible biography commemorates the fiftieth anniversary of the publication in 1962 of the pioneering environmentalist’s book Silent Spring. The biography depicts the life of a woman who demonstrated through the written word how one person can alter an entire planet’s course.

“Once you are aware of the wonder and beauty of the earth, you will want to learn about it,” wrote Rachel Carson.  An American marine biologist and conservationist, Carson investigated the effects of over use of pesticides on people, animals, and plants.  Her path-breaking work is credited with advancing the global environmental movement.
Laurie Lawlor’s books have appeared on many notable lists, including ALA Children’s Books, ALA Best Books for Young Adults, the NCSS-CBC Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young Readers, and the IRA Teachers’ Choice. She was the IRA 2010 Prairie State Award Winner. Visit her web site: She lives in the Chicago area.