Pine Mountain Cemetery XXIV

The village down below this mountain,
Really once just called the settlement
Is all but gone nowadays. First road

Was widened, then they built a high
School so big it shaded all the houses
Running down the foot trod lane.

Then the Sampson place burned,
Scorched the ground, then Ed’s, though
He was long dead, gone. Left us young.

A pioneer and his clan once crossed
At the Gap and just kept moving. Old
Man Ross knew what he wanted.

He found it too, along with enough timber
To keep him the rest of his days. Until,
That is, the railroad chewed its way

Right through the point of land loved
By Ross even named Ross Point. Water
Was a problem up on that ridge. The women

Were glad enough he moved them all down
Next to the river bend. Pretty little place, fairly
Wide as valleys go in Appalachia. Others

Joined by blood found their way up that
Cumberland branch and for enough years
To imprint several generation life was good.

This wasn’t the only cemetery, just the one
Most used by the Ross’s three lines. Funny
How it got to be the place to bury folks.

Even those came back who died in exile
Living where the land has lost it spirit can’t
Stand tall and strong anymore, plumb flat.

We make quite a to do when we lose precious
Ones and cry and twist and mourn. If they
Fall to dust up here we hope it hurts some less.

Nothing lasts though and it takes a lifetime to
Understand that, even little villages of folks
Do fade in time leaving only their memories alive.