I am pleased to promote my newest poem Thoughts on an Appalachian Waltz that has been published in The Notebook #5: Women and the Land.
You can learn more about The Grassroots Women Project here.
Thoughts on an Appalachian Waltz was inspired by a piece of music, Appalachia Waltz, by Mark O’Connor. While listening to this piece of music on a random Sunday afternoon, pictures of a lifestyle came into my head and I started writing.
In my head I saw a man wandering through the fields with his scythe, standing on the top of a hill, looking across his land with tears in his eyes. I wondered what could possibly have caused this man to grieve so, in such lush countryside, and then I saw it. Across the way, near the trees at the edge of his property, was a gravestone. No names, no dates, just “loving wife and mother” etched onto the stone.
Soon his older children come, dressed in their Sunday clothes, the oldest boy carries a small grain sack with flowers sewn in. These five men carry the package down the hill to the gravesite, where I see another son digging.
As the men attempt to keep their strength, the oldest lowers the package into the freshly-dug grave. I see blonde hair peeking out.
I see geese, cows, a mule and chickens gathering at the top of the hill, as if they know someone dear is now gone.
As I sit here listening to my inspiration, I see the scene explicitly. Listen to O’Connor’s work. What do you see?