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To understand the needs of our country in the Air Age, we must know
what materials are needed to build airplanes, where they can be obtained,
how they may be shipped, and how accessible are the sources of supply.
-From “Air World Map By American Airlines, Inc” (1944)

Light, downy fluff from seed pods of kapok trees

makes sound-deadening material that insulated

airplanes, sometimes cushioned cockpit seats.

Forest of kapok trees, in Khmer, is Prey Nokor, later called

Saigon. My father might have crouched behind these trees

in '68. The trunks and branches are crowded

with large, robust simple thorns
. The leaves like palms

and the pods, the size of soda cans, grow hundreds

to a tree. Their fibre's light, buoyant,

resilient, highly flammable, resistant to water.

His favorite drink was root beer. My sisters, star-eyed

in '82, gulped A&W in the yard

and when an airplane crossed, they’d stretch their tanned

arms and hold up their cans in an unheard toast.


words: Emily Brandt, NY (examiner-blog)
original publication: Kapok / Podium

image: Dorothee Lang, Germany (blueprint21)
original publication: rezonation / shiver (retrieved)


another understanding: untitled (#18)


BluePrintReview - issue 22 - re /visit /cycle /turn