I wish that this fire was done,
It hasn’t been very much fun.
The smoke and the ash and the haze
make for long indoor days.
Yellow shirts scope out our place,
declare it defensible space.
We stare out the windows and grieve,
but it’s just too hard to leave.
Gotta run sprinklers all day,
to keep firebrands at bay.
Check Inciweb, Facebook and more
sure wish the rain would just pour.

Orange smoke rises up in the sky,
choppers with buckets swoop by,
paint a stripe on the ridge line,
hope they got to it in time,
Scaffold Camp Creek goes up with a roar!
I don’t think I can take much more.

On my deck neighbors gather each night,
snapping pictures of flames leaping bright.
As Buttermilk drainage is lit
trees crown, torch, skyrocket, holy s***!
But the fire crews they do not yield,
plant a heli-base in the alfalfa field.

The smoke, the noise, the stress,
my garden is a slurry-splattered mess.
We all knew Twisp River was due,
but to burn so much at once, who knew?
My eyes are filled with tears
for the valley I’ve loved for 22 years.

Duffy Lake where my young daughter cried,
surrounding beauty more than she could abide.
Sawtooth traverse with pre-teen son,
at Poplar Flats pit he learned to handle a gun.
Fishing Scatter Lake hooked my pup in the lip,
at War Creek falls a friend did a flip.
Near Oval Peak a big bear chased my dog,
down below there’s a really cool bog.
Riding the river trail feels like we’re spoiled,
pedal strong where that rattler once lay coiled.

In the winter we can backcountry ski,
can’t say where or my partners un-friend me.
So many special places with no real name,
we go seeking solitude not fame.
And special friends who’ve shared special a day,
like when those moose would not yield the way.

Far up Reynolds Creek stands my favorite tree.
Did it survive? I’d like to go see.
And I wonder about the forest creatures,
like that bear with the golden brown features.
I wonder will there be mudslides this fall,
will we be able to venture upriver at all?
There’s really no place that I’d rather go.
Lord, please bring on the snow!

JoAnn Metzler lives on Twisp River Road.