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Leaf Blower Blues

Leaf Blower Blues

  • Updated

Oh, insolent intruder

peace-shattering nuisance,

your noxious fumes, airborne plumes —

invade lungs and ears

cochlear cilia tremble

coughs hack,

Residents run for cover

Will we begin in wine country

to mask for leaf blower pollution?

Sell combo packs to tourists —

chic mask and noise cancelling ear plugs

Will we still be able to smell the wine?

Oh, calamity!

No respite for residents, seven days a week —

Seven days a week!

noise exceeding sixty-five decibel ordinance;

frustrated neighbors do the policing

Code sits ignored at City Hall, covered

with a thick layer of dirt blown

into the open window

on a stinking cloud of petrol

Toxin-spewing, ear-busting blowers

chasing with ant eater noses

one resistant leaf that catches —

clings until the next leaf blower finds it,

sniffing like a hunting dog to force it hence,

into the adjacent yard

Oh, city bureaucrats,

sitting in offices above the din

while we scurry like rats —

Hurry, hurry! Shut the doors,

close the windows

Oh, accountability, St. Helena!

we beg of you —

Rewrite the city code

ban gas-powered polluters —

Offer rebates on electric tech,

Lead please, lead us

into this advancing


Put peace and quiet back in our town

Valli Ferrell

St. Helena

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Related to this story

  • Updated

Letters: St. Helena should correct its betrayal of the leaf blower ordinance.

  • Updated

Letters: A special thanks to some kind St. Helena law enforcement personnel.

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