invisible yet well-known

I love National Poetry Month for many reasons. I feel alive this month because of poetry. I hope my writing friends are taking me up on my challenge to write a poem every day.

The urgency to write the story intensifies. I see more clearly how to do it. Isolation is necessary. How do I accomplish such a monumental feat? I find I have my own Montcoal to claw out of. It is so important to the reader. I have identified her. She is one person who needs to know what I know; to bear witness to what I have endured and learn from me. I MUST write it for her, even though she is invisible and unknown; she is at the same time well-known to me.

Here is my submission for NPM for April 9th:


until it overwhelms her, she sits
weathered hands folded
in her quiet lap
purple lips have
kissed blueberries in the sunshine
pursed less the gasp
of exasperation break through the bars
of her imprisoned body
she is ready
to lift the ragged edges of her skirt
drop to her knees

reverently digging in dirt
breaking earth worms and
dandelion roots
in half
falling away from the bitter
taste and feel of earth
the faint smell of sulfur
beneath her manicured nails
that pops out with little resistance

Meanwhile, hope for the 4 miners trapped–buried–1,000 feet below the surface of the earth in Montcoal, West Virginia dwindles. Fire and toxic smoke and fumes and gases are preventing rescue crews again. Seven of the eulogized fathers, sons, brothers, friends were laid to rest and all died doing what they loved and believed in.

As a poet, i must find ways to eulogize these brave, courageous men.


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