Gas Patch Dawn

My poem “Gas Patch Dawn” appears today in The Rising Phoenix Review.

Gas Patch Dawn

The shadows web their winter light
across sagebrush the size of men.
The mobile homes concede their deaths
one frostbitten panel at a time.  A ballistic
wind beats their rooftop wounds of tin.
In the distance the white mountains
slither along the glow of the horizon.
A truck door barks shut.
An engine growls and chokes
on chunks of icy diesel
before fading down the gravel road,
unsatiated, to devour whole
the gas fields in one giant swallow.

I hope the poem encapsulates the sense of foreboding death of a boom-bust town on the prairie, which is pretty much where I grew up.  The verb choices are very deliberate-“slither,” “barks,” “growls,” “beats,” “chokes,” “devour.”  So are the internal rhymes–“winter,” “ballistic,” “wind,” “tin,” “distance,” “slither,” “engine.” Finally, I use more alliteration than usual–“web,”winter,” “wind,” wounds,” “white.”


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