Thursday, June 21, 2018
Summer Poetry Pop-Up: Myra Sklarew
Safety in Our National Parks
It is true, an absolute necessity. We need concealed
weapons in our national parks, Taurus revolvers
with their long and distinguished history. Or
Uzis, courtesy of the IDF. AK-47s, Kalashnikov’s gift
to the free world. We must protect ourselves
against ancient redwood trees, Trumpeter Swans,
Sandhill Cranes and eagles, anonymous killer moths,
groundhogs. Against geysers, waterfalls, caldera,
spiders, sagebrush, glacial lakes and fossils, elk and coyote,
Bighorn Sheep. Thus we carry armloads of supplies,
multiple cartridges, loaded magazines, backpacks.
How grateful we are to our legislators for making
this possible. We must be armed in the event the sun
fixes its hot glance on us, or an errant star appears
in the night sky like some infrared searchlight.
It is not possible to be too careful in the national park.
(U.S. national parks open to holders of concealed firearms, February 22, 2010)
Myra Sklarew attended Tufts University and the Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins, and studied bacterial viruses and genetics at Cold Spring Harbor Biological Institute. She conducted research on memory and prefrontal lobe function at Yale University School of Medicine. Her books include collections of poetry, short prose, essays and the forthcoming, A Survivor Named Trauma.