TO THE MAN WHO SCORED 300K TO CRY WOLF
BEFORE CONGRESS ON BEHALF OF UTAH, A
STATE IN WHICH THERE ARE NO WOLVES,1
I picture it like this: You order elk,
wild mushrooms, on a bed of rice—wild rice,
and cunning, vicious. Rice you have to stalk
across the tundra, the inhospitable ice,
loping on snowshoes . . . that can’t be easy.
Rice you bring down and haul back to D.C.
I hope our state appreciates your work
to block wolf packs’ access, every dessert
you’re willing to risk—pear amandines in spun
honey, sorbet with a cherry reduction—
each Johnnie Walker Blue for each congressman.
Cheers. The least we owe you is a sonnet.
And a three-hundred-thousand-dollar budget
like a bag of charms to keep the absent wolves away.
1 I know, but it’s a true story. Big Game Forever—an anti-wolf lobbying group consisting of a guy named Don Peay—got this line-item, one-time spending during the 2013 legislative session. Brian Maffly’s story in The Salt Lake Tribune (March 7, 2013) details it nicely.
Rob Carney is the author of three books and three poetry chapbooks. His work has appeared in Cave Wall, Mid-American Review, Quarterly West, and others. He is a Professor of English at Utah Valley University and lives in Salt Lake City.