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msJAMA
September 1, 1999

Scarecrow

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JAMA. 1999;282(9):823. doi:10.1001/jama.282.9.823-JMS0901-6-1

FIRST PLACE

Wyoming seemed another planet
So glacial—almost lunar.
I'd never seen a snowfence till
We rounded the lone mesa—there
The plain was split in miles of perfect lines

In miles of perfect lines in midsummer
Deducing "snowfence" was a stretch
I didn't make as we, bewildered,
Drove on to Laramie.
We drove on to Laramie.
Now another vision of Wyoming
Drifts through my daydreams.
The western Autumn bleakens.

The western Autumn bleakens—
Is that possible, in summer it was brown.
Now frost crisps sparse grass
And "snowfence" makes more sense.

Snowfence makes more sense
But senseless still that they lashed you
There, left you, native son, to die—
A scarecrow under the endless sky.

A scarecrow under the endless sky—
The Western autumn bleakens
And snowfence makes more sense.
Wyoming seemed another planet
As we drove on to Laramie.

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