Terence Robinson, an award-winning author and poet and the CFO at Kootenai Electric Cooperative in Hayden, Idaho, wrote this homage to line crews after severe winter storms ripped through eastern Washington and north Idaho in late 2015.

The wind abates without fanfare,
gone as sudden as it arrived. In its wake,
broken poles, downed lines

Phones light up, power’s off
Dispatch calls go out,
sending linemen into the night

Blocked roads, wires sparking
Safety first for the team,
‘everyone goes home tonight,’ their mantra

A culture, a philosophy
Guides all they do
Keeps them safe

When too tired, wet, and cold,
foreman calls them off. Stay safe,
to work another day

More than a job, it’s a calling
Our members depend on them,
fuels their desire to serve

We feed them, clothe them, provide tools
They bring dedication, strength, heart
Watch over each other, through the night

Later, power’s back on. Letters trickle in,
singing praise of their heroes.
Many from the elderly—what would our vulnerable have done?

They follow a humble creed. Carry out their mission,
with quiet confidence. And a safety culture,
‘everyone goes home tonight’