He would be up early, drinking rich expresso
at the cabin window as a strengthening sunshine
sparkled the frosted meadow grass and the usual
hometown deer worked his latest attempt at kale.
He would turn on the radio and listen to morning’s
new complaints about followed politics and the
latest baseball scores. He would be bored but
he would be free to putter and push for change.
He’s up but there is no bear to search for, no sun melting
a satisfied frost, no desire to do anything than monitor
the fire, the smoke that thickens and soaks the morning
air like a sarcastic joke as it has for the last week.
The kale still grows as if it cannot feel the gray
heat. He passed it while carrying survival things to his car,
an older Toyota almost filled with stuff he can’t abandon
or burn, like fresh ground coffee. He now drinks instant.
Will the fancy cut street houses catch first, or will
the abandon old growth forests burn? A northerly gust rips
across the meadow, driving away smoke, turning the air
crisp and clear, letting the sun pierce and reveal.
The survival road clears. He starts to return his coffee maker
from the car, plans on re-furnishing the cabin with needed gear.
Then the thick smoke returns, a nearby forest fire renders the air
almost impossible to breath so he repacks the car and waits.