Fort Mac (a poem)

underneath the darkened sky
black smoke rolls out in clouds
and fiery tongues lash out in rage
consuming tinder trees and matchbox houses
while ant trails of humans pour out
in droves abandoning
as the world watches for days

this is hell but not
in hell no relief remains in sight
in hell no return to the light of a clearing sky
no supplications for rain
only pity from the living
no shelter from the blaze
nor lunch money
nor compassionate letters
from schoolchildren on a remote island
where father
son spouse
journeyed west
to find a fortune
gone up in fiery haze
dragging Alberta to her knees
long before the oilsands run dry.

©2016, cindy lapeña


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