Mt. Lemmon’s Fire

Fire crept down the lofty mountains,

lapped up Mt. Lemmon’s piney trees

eating at the desert’s gorgeous greenery, 

insatiably devouring all it came to see. 

The sheriff, knocking on my door,

said it had taken sight of me and mine. 

That it would soon be time to run, 

“You have two hours to collect 

the precious things you wish to save.”


It haunts my soul both then and now

that in that lonely smoke filled moment

I could hardly think of anything 

that mattered all that much to me. 

I grabbed Grandma’s ancient Bible,

old photos, our marriage license, 

some valued papers, a dirty, dusty box

filled with odds and ends of memories

I found eroding on the closet floor. 


We loaded up the trusty Buick’s trunk

with the things we mostly never see,

leaving things we thought we needed

at the mercy of the fickle, wayward winds

who conspired with the roaring flames

to consume what didn’t matter anyway. 

Firefighters and retardant laden planes

turned all the fuming fire into ashen char. 

And we ran back to what we didn’t really love. 

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