A prospector awoke to find his ass
missing in the early morning shadows
of a greasewood shrouded spring
hidden in the barren outcroppings
of the high Nevada desert.
Picking up a rock too heavy to heave,
a rock with weight greater than ought
to be, a rock, if he were to pelt it, would
break his ass, he discovered the state
of Nevada’s second richest silver strike.
According to local legend, Jim Butler was the prospector who made the strike about 1900. Tonopah is derived from the Shoshone language. To-nuv means greasewood and pa means water.