Island Town

Woronofski Island in front of Wrangell, Alaska
I've lived my entire life on islands. Islands have shaped who I am.

Here is a poem from my poetry chapbook that depicts an aspect of island life in rural Alaska.

For Charlene, my niece

Winter in this island town where dreams are spent like snapping kindling, the cold shakes us into the roar of hoses spraying, water falling in sheets, red emergency lights rotating across snow. We wait until the firemen find her body—our niece. Not another one—another one. The expectancy of fire ignites within us, around us—our old houses, faulty wiring, wood heat, and empty pockets, rage through us with a flash of heat and choking ash, and the New Year's siren hail.



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