February 9, 2021

Melissa Balmain

“SPINACH CAN SEND EMAILS NOW, AND TWITTER IS IN DISBELEAF”

—Today

Why so surprised, folks, that I’m sending mail?
I’m spinach, not some turnip! I’m a super!
While you’re obsessing over wombat poop or
Bernie memes, I focus without fail
on deeper stuff. I burrow down, alert
to hidden poison. I’m the real green party.
No activist, not even a big smarty,
is more equipped to dish the eco-dirt.
It’s nice I’ve reached some scientific ears,
but give me yours as well, the Twittersphere’s—
at last my grassroots network must be heard!
And after I receive your due attention,
and you cut back your silly condescension,
the kale and Brussels sprouts would like a word.

from Poets Respond
February 9, 2021

__________

Melissa Balmain: “This week we learned that MIT scientists are using spinach—whose roots sense chemical traces—to trigger emails on underground levels of compounds used in explosives. ‘Professor Michael Strano, who led the research … said that the process could also be used to warn scientists about pollution and environmental changes since plants are constantly absorbing a ‘vast amount of data’ from their surroundings,” according to an article in Today.” (web)

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