Dangerous Compassions


with Trinity bomb harmed family
[Smiling fat white woman holds pics of relatives harmed by the Trinity bomb.]
I did a presentation about the Trinity bomb for my community, the Las Vegas Catholic Worker.  I talked about how the Trinity bomb affected my family and me.  Spoiler alert: it wasn’t good for us.

When I was getting ready to present, I recorded myself doing the presentation–almost 12 minutes.  I posted it on soundcloud.  Please listen, if you get the chance.

Researching, I’ve only learned a sliver.  I would like to learn a lot more.  How the bombs really work.  More about Japan.  The islands that were bomb test places also.

I’d like to join forces with the Tularosa Valley Downwinders.  Really I’d like to join forces with all the downwinders.  But they say we’re all downwinders, now.

I’d like to learn more about transgenerational trauma and epigenetics.  How do genes work, anyway.  My understanding is super basic.

back to New Mexico

Mostly I would really like to return to Carrizozo.  That nice art lady who let me use her bathroom, that bougie cafe that didn’t let me use theirs.  I wonder if either is still there.  They seemed weirdly miraculous then in spring, before covid changed so much.

The post office with its cranky white guy worker.  The two distant relatives I met–one funny, one serious.  I remember them really clearly, but there are photos also.

I’d like to return to the cemetery and do another ritual there, knowing what I know now.  We were rushed, before.  I’d like to stay there in Carrizozo for a while–see the sunrise there.  Spend more time near the old adobe houses, like my mom’s mom was born in–an adobe house without an address.

I can only take it bit by bit, though.  Quickly I’m overwhelmed and need to switch to a different task.  This kind of pain is new, and I’m getting used to feeling it.

Lots of apologizes in my body, and trying to comprehend the suffering.  Who were these people, how do they relate to me, and what do I do with all of this information.  I can’t put it back in the box.  Sometimes I wish I never learned it.

Going to Carrizozo in spring of this year, after my mom died, I thought I was being sentimental.  It was a fanciful pilgrimage; I had a spiritual longing, but I didn’t know why.  I had no idea what I would learn there, and I was totally unprepared.


Blessings to Mother Earth.  I’m sorry for what we’ve done with you, to you, on you, despite your well-being, to intentionally harm.

When I learn about the Trinity bomb, I see racism, hubris, selfishness.  It’s the super-common phenomenon of clueless privileged people living in their bubble of entitled, self-congratulatory, violent consumption, pretending the world revolves around them.  They shake each other’s hands with joy, ecstatic that they found a better way to kill.

Life wants to make love with itself and create more life.  I exist to nurture.  Creating better ways to kill is really yuck.


I was talking with Ming about the attitudes of Oppenheimer and other physicists who worked on it, absolving themselves of personal responsibility, because science and politics should be separate.  “I’m just doing my job,” is a really bad excuse.  If your job is killing people, maybe you should quit.

I told Ming, “It’s not like they thought the bomb would explode out into flowers and well-being.”  They didn’t know exactly how it would be used, but its very purpose was death.

In my mind, the flowers are dark pink and arranged coming out of the bomb in a beautiful fractal pattern.

mountains clouds
[Desert land in Nevada, not New Mexico, not near the Trinity bomb site. Cloudy sky, sun, distant mountains, and beautiful earth.]

By Laura-Marie

Good at listening to the noise until it makes sense.

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