October 1, 2014
Our drab green school bus shudders, shimmies
like an angry rattlesnake
racing south, toward a desert laced
with dangers and mistakes.
I nudge a dozing Serber, risk
his wrath to ask (he knows
the desert) how to treat snake bite.
He snaps, “A fifth of whiskey.”
It’s late. I ought to let him sleep.
But I persist, “And if
our bomb ignites the atmosphere?”
He turns his back. “Two fifths.”
THE BUS TO TRINITY
Edward Teller, physicist
By John Canaday