If the regional Chambers of Commerce ever need someone to promote the many virtues of our fair neck of the woods, I stand ready to shoulder the task. For example…
A Worrier’s Guide to the North Country
I’ve always been a worrier. I come by it naturally,
from duck and cover drills, from the “ready flight”
with its load of mutually-assured destruction.
I can’t stop worrying, but I can consider instead
the things I don’t need to worry about, living here
in the North Country. Volcanoes, for example.
Not gonna happen. Tsunamis? Only from asteroids
of dinosaur-killer size. Earthquakes? An occasional
rumble, but nothing a body couldn’t sleep through.
We don’t have venomous snakes save a few down
in the southern Adirondacks, no man-eating reptiles
in the river, no scorpions hiding out in the slippers.
The North Country hasn’t been a battleground
since 1814. We rarely see a tornado. It’s too wet
for massive wildfires. It’s too cold for termites.
We don’t seem likely to starve or die from thirst.
No roving bands of fanatics ride in to randomly
chop off heads. All in all, life here is pretty sweet.
You might even want to marry and raise a kid or two.
It’s pretty safe to go out and smell the wildflowers,
to watch the river flow and listen to the birds sing.
Just don’t forget to keep putting on the sunscreen,
and to apply a little DEET and to check yourself
all over for deer ticks when you get back home.