someone asked online today
when you think of Appalachia
what visuals come to mind?
and a flood of home
washed across my conscience
as I remembered the many
yesterdays, like
Friday’s rain that floated
steam up from green hills, the
tomatoes staked out in rows
in yard gardens,
the creak of the wooden bridge
whenever I drive over
to the old home place, and
that’s what I decided,
those three things were drawn
on my personal canvas, yet
as the day wore on, I kept
visualizing it all
poke uncut on yard edges
as we wait for supper
or those old-timey roses
pink ramblers, seven sisters,
and on, and on, until
a flood gate opened in my mind
and I weeped words,
bled portraits, like
cornbread coal trucks honeysuckle cornbread dinner on the ground red-cover hymnals creek crawdads swinging bridges goldenrod porch swings railroad spikes red dog shuck beans broom corn tractors tire swings possums quilts blackberries iron skillets bluebirds rusty dozers dewy morning glories sorghum-making brown water skipping rocks mud dawbers, and
then I drew a breath
stopped, realized
I would never stop, like
an old dirt path up the branch
taking me home as I stepped
into the smell of wet dirt
and memory