Castilleja Dreamin

20 Ounce Cheeseburgers,

Locals at the bar,

Fields of Castilleja,

In the old tire tracks of a car.

Seasons change, the Sun disappears.

Autumn is now upon us and in creep the pecuniary fears.

I never imagined that I would enjoy Fargo as much as I do

There’s plenty of large remnants up there, just waiting for me and you.

Sometimes I wonder if I’ll ever make it back to Nelson Prairie

Although the Mahnomen landscape is burned into my mind.

Just getting there, driving over countless ponds, gives you such a rush.

Visions of Showy Ladies Slippers hiding beneath the brush.

But up there, as in many places across the nation, they are in a bind.

So much land, so few people, such little time – its oddly airy.

“We have no funding for permanent staff” the land managers all say,

“Those in Washington are always getting in our way!”

Grandstanding, Misallocating Money, and Freezing Up in real time,

It truly does make one wonder, is this coincidence or design?

But the remnants do not care, and without fire, pruning and love – they will degrade

Alas, it does not matter, as the politicians will still be paid.

Winter is quickly approaching, and it is that special time of year,

Where we send out never ending job applications,

Too many to count,

As we hold our breath in fear.

When will I work next, who will I work for, will I have to travel far?

In these moments, I’ll venture back to Nelson Prairie, mentally,

Then stop for a 20 Ounce Cheeseburger at Mainline Bar.

This poem goes out to all of the Seasonal and Temporary Biological Science Technicians based throughout the country, trying to afford living without healthcare, benefits or any long term guarantees.