Dorcas been hangin on and makin do
As long as she’s been on this here earth.
First she thought to fight and stay wind free.
To never care no matter how wild she might be.
She would run the hills, and laugh at crows
Bedevil old women and curse the preacher.
We watched her twist and twirl and curl
Her body right there beside some boy.
She’s laugh whenever Pa tried to stop her.
Sailing down around, laughing, cry riding the wave
Grabbing passion as her way over the mountain top.
The she tamed the roar and birthed him, mashed and bound,
The baby who didn’t stop her, he pushed them down a different road.
But another came, then her ties were tight enough to stop the run.
“Fight again, but fight quiet like. I’ll save a piece here and there,
Enough to find the heart in me.” Her whisper loud as thunder,
The soul pushed them on. She sought to save the need inside.
Freedom was down deep somewhere in the middle of her,
The road right there buried under flesh and vein, throbbing a tune.
The ache to breathe, wild and free hid the twinge
Bearing up around and through her side.
She decided early to pay it no mind. Even old
Doc said it was not remarkable whatever that might
Mean to a woman about to run again.
Part of her left early as she shrank to pencil thin.
Last night, she couldn’t sleep again, turned on the light
To give herself a right good look. “Why, I’m seeing the
Last of me. The road will open, I will ride the wind.
No more stopping. Praise God, I’ll be free.”
It makes me glad to know a smile played around her eyes
While she stood there facing what we all must face someday.
Wonder if I will be that brave? Course I won’t be escaping
The coal camp and that could make all the difference.