Smoke from summer fires
Flows thick down dry arroyos
Ghost of rivers lost
by Kate Rauner
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Firefighter by Charles White
Was a target-practice start.
At West Mims Fire in Georgia,
There lightning played a part.
All before the summer
Begins Memorial Day,
Before the weekend warriors
Come to the woods to play.
When living in a city
You look for weekend gigs.
Or if you’re in suburbia,
Fast-food jobs are big.
But in the rural places,
In forest dry or desert low,
It’s during fire season
That you make extra dough.
By Kate Rauner
My spouse was barely home long enough to clean and repair his gear – now gone to the Baca Prescribed Burn – hoping to remove accumulated fuel so wildfires don’t turn deadly. You bloom where you’re planted! In you live on a shore, you fish and swim and maybe get a boat. In a city, I suppose there are clubs and entertainments. But in rural America you hunt, go 4-wheeling – and learn wildland firefighting.
Visit my blog for a new poem, every-other-post (about) or try one of my collections – rhyming poems for fun, inspired by science. And a few haiku too.
The fire roared, it flew, it crowned
through this neighborhood at the edge of town.
It leaped and danced down streets of homes;
and drove us to our safety zones.
Now flashing lights obscured by smoke
mark engine crews still hard at work.
My hand-crew seeks out embers red;
we dig them out to stop their spread.
With families gone and power off;
the night is dark for houses lost.
It’s oddly peaceful, hushed and calm,
though that, we know, will not last long.
Tonight the crews in green and gold
walk through the tales that should be told.
We do our job, but see the warning
of tears that will come in the morning.
By Kate Rauner
Learn about defensible space. http://www.firewise.org/ It’s not fate, it’s your responsibility.