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Those pushers of carts
Claim no ties
Pullers of ropes
Cargo of cans

Passing they ask
Do you have the time?
Buyer a mile
Four o'clock closing
Its noose

johnlovejr at hotmail dot com

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The following comments are for "Cannikin"
by Flonigus

Cargo of cans
I don't fully understand this, but the wistful elegiac tone is rather engaging. I find I'm thinking of the street people one sees tugging shopping carts of cans through the city streets at dawn - severed from society and from our busy, scheduled 'time', but chained, it seems, to their own little world and its cargo - both physical and spiritual. Hmm. At present, that's the best I can do!

( Posted by: MobiusSoul [Member] On: May 26, 2006 )

Yes, Caitlin,

You've got the idea. There is practically a society of cart people here in Oakland. I sometimes converse briefly with one or two of them, usually when they pause to get a cigarette from me in front of my workplace, or, as in the poem, when they simply wish to know the time.

The success of their enterprise depends on a knowledge of which streets are scheduled for curbside pick-up of recyclables on a particular morning; and when to hit the bins, which are set out by residents the night before, ahead of the competition. They are actually stealing from the city's private recycling contractor, but I've never seen them get hassled by the police for that.

It is not uncommon to see two and three heavily-laden shopping carts tied together in a train and being pulled by a rope by one person, straining, down a traffic lane in the street and across wide intersections. This is what sometimes motivates a passing policeman to either give them a quick warning, or worse.

The carts will have plastic garbage bags tied to the sides all around, filled with material. Often the carts will tip, making a horrible noise. The people are mostly good about cleaning up the resultant mess.

Thank you for the visit.

~ John

( Posted by: Flonigus [Member] On: May 26, 2006 )

response for Fairplay

I only knew the title to mean "small can" and liked it because of the ending containing "kin", which, I thought, could help to project my thoughts on all-inclusiveness.

It was only after posting this that I put the word into a search engine and found troubling associations with a huge underground nuclear test. The old 1960s unabridged dictionary had no such references.


~ John

( Posted by: Flonigus [Member] On: May 27, 2006 )

Earth shaking
I didn't know what Cannikin meant, googled, and found that it is also the name for a nuclear weapon test.

( Posted by: VickieSALT [Member] On: April 15, 2011 )

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