It was more a clearing
of space than conception, a slice
less electric than imagined.
Lightning rods are crosshairs
of least resistance, so why
go out of your way
to carve cold room root
cellars for another
of parenthood? The wedge we
want is a clamour—cutline
access to seismic legacy data.
Earthquakes are new around
here, diamond-tip drilled.
A grand idea: falling in love
with a quarter section, then spelling
sky out for the rest of my life.
Riding this derrick all the way
down until someone drowns or
drops a match and it all goes up
and on again, down the road
to a reserve town
where the tap water isn’t
There’s no such thing as legal land
description in the province
of weather modification—home
of eugenics and clouds scalloped
with silver iodine. They say it
prevents hail from ruining crops.
Somewhere between hoodoos
riddled with spit cups I ripped this
pair of truck balls from the winch,
packing lift-kit stomping grounds
hand to mouth.
Count the mountains
Get ready to rumble. Baiting
the prairie is disaster—synapse
to seed, rigging
my itch to pile drive
a personal well.
If I could frack
K.B. Thors is a poet from rural Alberta. Her debut collection Vulgar Mechanics is forthcoming from Coach House Books in fall 2019 (Canada) and Partus Press (Iceland/U.K.). Her translation of Stormwarning (Phoneme) by Icelandic poet Kristín Svava Tómasdóttir was nominated for the PEN Literary Award for Poetry in Translation and won the American Scandinavian Foundation Leif and Inger Sjöberg Prize. Winner of the Vallum Poetry Prize and an Arc poem of the year finalist, her poems and essays have been published across Canada, the U.S., and U.K.. She teaches writing and literature and lives in Montréal.
Vallum: Contemporary Poetry is a Montreal-based literary magazine. Founded in 2000, the biannual magazine publishes poetry, art, reviews, essays, and interviews by writers and artists from around the world. Our magazine and contributors have won some of literature’s highest honours, including Pushcart Prizes, the Governor General’s Award, National Magazine Awards, and more.
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