The Art of Wealth Creation.

• roads
• access to capital
• raw materials
• markets &
• labor

From the headwaters
carried along
roads fresh cut
from wilderness

the soil cap
bleeds out
in the first rains
after tree fall

The rest follows more
methodically through:
• plundering
• burning
• mining
• logging,
• tv &
• cultivation

NY 400
I see alchemy
in action
on the
petroleum tarmac
of the
center – periphery

mammalian beasts
struck down by passers-by
flesh, fur, blood
pressed, ground
into the road
red to brown to gold

here on the municipal, the micro level
the immutable laws
of economics are reversed

capital-flows and resources, spread outwards
to outlying communities
where wealth can be
properly cared-for and nurtured.

along the Kisangani-Buta Road
the natural laws of commerce are observed

sealed high-voltage lines
protected by the
barbed wire and cameras
of the Inga-Shaba power project
from upcountry jungle
to the capital for
the entire 11 hundred mile stretch.

Zairians, now Congolese
attempt to steal
the electricity they
will finance for decades to come.

Leaving the occasional
charred or shot body
scattered along the road side.

A temporary biological testament
to desperation, lawlessness
and economic barbarism

Whether pushed in front of traffic
by the spread of unregulated, irresponsible sprawl
or fried or executed
by the chicanery
of global trade and crony capitalism
victims are seen as
perpetrators or pests.

Those expert in the secrets
of the Emerald Tablet
believe their practice is a clear path
to riches and economic development

whether transforming lead into gold
or trusting extraction
or export-oriented production
generates wealth

whether their faith lies in
Hermeticism or competitive advantage
it makes no difference
the poor will be poorer and
the rich will get richer

stealing the wealth
of nations
with the polite society cover
of formulas, policies
and structural adjustments

From Congo to the U.S.
from the Kisangani-Buta Road
to the 400
the center-periphery model
performs as desired

The lifeblood of peoples
the lifeblood of nations
drained from the
destitute to the prosperous
flowing over asphalt

Ground into the pavement
from red
to brown
to gold

© 2003-2012 Brian Brown- Cashdollar

2 thoughts on “Alchemy

  1. Oh, good God, Brian–how do you take abstract concepts like development, economics, etc., and link them with planetary, human, and animal suffering so powerfully and conretely in one cohesive poem? Seems impossible to me, and yet you did it. This piece is brilliant–beautiful, tragic, and angry all at once. I’m still reeling from it.

  2. First, thanks. Short answer -9 years. I just figured out what it was about a couple of weeks ago. And just this morning I figured out the correlation between the blood, the road, and globalization. I’m not sure if it’s done, but I know how it ends.

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