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Too Much Of A Good Thing - Poem by Jimmy Santiago Baca (Jimmy Santiago Baca)

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Snow’s been melting too soon— passing the Río Grande every day, I note water level is high, all flowing down river. What happens when I need to irrigate pastures in summer and there is no water? Farmers get edgy. Start cursing neighbors under their breath for using too much water. Crops stunted, only one alfalfa cutting instead of three, no feed for cows, no money to buy feed . . . and then like it happened a few years ago, Mr. Gonzales goes out and you hear rifle shots blister cold morning air, and you know his cattle are falling in snow, dead. At Coronado Center, biggest shopping mall in New Mexico, I hear two suntanned ladies praising our wonderful weather. I give them a glance, throw my gloves on the counter for the cashier, and wonder what a farmer’s wife would tell them. Jimmy Santiago Baca

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