Tag Archives: Ukraine

WOBBLY WORLD

 

I wake to a full moonlit room,

a cyclops train bearing down on me

from over the black ridge—

 

            clackity-clack,

            there is no going back

            to find my dreams.

 

Still steady at a distance

killing things, I would have been

a good soldier, gorilla-style—

 

I know the place to go

to lift the pain away, to become

an instrument of peace

 

for the suffering, for the enemy

forever an ugly man

obsessed with efficiency.

 

The madman’s war and refugees—

what peace has he

within his hollow bunker

 

extinguishing what he wants

just to flaunt his power

for a wobbly world to see?

 

 

THE BRANDING PEN

 

Once again, the south slopes fade, begging for moisture. We’ve been following yesterday’s forecast rain for well over a week, watched it vacillate from 3/4s to ¼-inch daily, while hoping to get Kenny and Virginia McKee’s calves branded in Woolley Canyon at the same time—a four-day gather in wild country. On cue, a light shower began as we finished up, but unfortunately the trailing storm evaporated by late afternoon.  But it was a delightful branding, an efficient dance of ropers and ground crew that was almost mechanical, yet seasoned with quips and joviality, reminding me that the center of our culture and community has always been the branding pen.

 

Two years of Covid and the recent Russian invasion of Ukraine has upset the equilibrium of the planet, injected fear with the hopeless horrors of war into nearly every soul. The meatpackers’ conspiracy that has defrauded both producers and consumers has added to the instability along with our ‘megadrought’, new terminology from the scientists denoting two decades of drought not seen since 800 AD—all in all, the impacts of which have created an overwhelming mess.

 

Kids—recounting the branding at home, Robbin and I tallied at least 10 little kids in and around the corrals, another generation exposed to this lifestyle, caring families who treasure the opportunity to teach their children how to get the work done. We are not helpless, it is a luxury to still have a place to ignore the outside world where we can pour our attention to what’s important, to the things we can do something about.