When the Chinook comes again in January and
Blows the ice floes off Baseline and Arapahoe
I ride the tract flats of the East trying to understand
The long slide show of history now almost through.
From this hill you can see the blinking signal of the laser
Weapons plant in Platteville. Rocky Flats’ stacks are visible.
The whole front range is perpendicular
Reality from here. Beneath this blinding wall
And still in waiting for the holy
Fire to consume it, a three hundred mile long
Strip of prairie unravels slowly
And without intermission from Pueblo to Wyoming.
But why direct too hard a light so late upon
This long frozen dormitory hell
When the wind that moves across these plains like a great lion
Will soon be all that remains of the Blue Hotel?
Digital elevation model map of Colorado, 2005 (USGS)
On the Road, Colorado: photo by Phillip Capper, 2005
Building 371 (plutonium recovery operations), Rocky Flats nuclear weapons production facility, Colorado (DOE)
Glove box used in plutonium operations, Rocky Flats nuclear weapons production facility, Colorado (DOE)
Worker holding a plutonium "button", Rocky Flats nuclear weapons production facility, Colorado (DOE)
Boulder, Colorado at twilight, looking toward the Front Range : photo by Phil Armitage
(All Rocky Flats photos via Historic American Engineering Record)