Friday, May 1, 1998

Woodsman, spare that tree?

To the Editor:

Not so here in Carlisle. We should be chanting, "ConsCom, Spare that Scrub!"—specifically the apparently worrisome menace of buckthorn on town-owned conservation land. And with Town Meeting hard at hand, there is yet further reason for the conservation commission and other would-be buckthorn bashers to yield! (And why on earth, you may wonder incredulously?) Because buckthorn is the wonder drug that will (if properly managed) enable the town to purchase every piece of open space without adding a penny to the mil rate. Incredible? Well, so you may well think, but buckthorn, ample in our quaint burg, is a significant source of anthraquinones, a laxative so powerful that it apparently should only be used when more common therapies have failed. Move over, Metamucil! Of course, being an herbal remedy, buckthorn allegedly possesses some anti-cancer potential according to a source (a 'mole' deep inside the USDA).

With tight budgets facing the town for the next several years, over-rides, new school worries and the general malaise about community involvement, wouldn't it be nice if we, the citizens of Carlisle, could harness the forces of this God-given wonder weed and find relief for all the problems that choke our town? All this while purging our open space of what has become, according to one commissioner, a constipating issue.

Name withheld

by request.