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Crop fields, once
Today tall grass has taken
Vigil on the hills
Named for old dead boys

Grass aplenty (surely
Two, five, ten winters
Steeped in lead, bloodied,
Washed clean in rain
Could feed a generation)

And then the sun
Always beating, Drumming
Sweat before my eyes
My life—flashing— a lark—

Here in this meadow
Mankind came to slaughter for a train yard
Between the mountain passes and the river
And the Run, once dried, is spilling over

With blood, with clay, for
Sons and daughters of
Virginia, these American tales
(Contested, my chains for soil...)

Pass whispered between
Mothers and little ones, the words
A lineage: Captain to farmer,
Farmer’s granddaughter

I witnessed the passing of our story
From one generation
And I stood by
duncan Oct 2018
ive never been to
virginia, ive never been
to kansas.

just a mirror image
of a dream i had, that
looked so real it
****** me over
for the rest of my life.

i call myself a writer but
i dont write.
i call myself a student but
i stay in bed.
i call myself a good friend but
i am gone.
i call myself a person but
i cant breathe.
Natália Aug 2018
We've grown distant
two lonely lighthouses
in the middle of the ocean
our glow shining away
from each other

Sailors come for safety
little did they know

We are searching for
the light too.
“So that was the Lighthouse, was it? No, the other was also the Lighthouse. For nothing was simply one thing” - Virginia Woolf
Jonathan Surname Aug 2018
I live a breath's away from the oldest river in the world.
While I don't take much of nature in it is awe inspiring,
to be sure.
I live within the crook of the oldest mountains in our history.
Not the tallest,
nor the proudest,
but for now these ranges are growing senile within their misery.

The riverrun through it and exposes rock perhaps a billion years old.
Our oral histories, passed on legends,
scary stories and mountaineer folklore accounts for
such a small passage of time.
We built a bridge once.
It was at one time the longest single-span arch in the world.
Now it's the fourth.
Top five, and that's something for which I am proud.
The oldest river, in the world.
The oldest mountains, in the world.
The highest fatal overdose rate, in the States.

There is a beauty to be had here. Somewhat backwards, but
growing up our water was clear.
It's now choked from coal slurry.
The brain drain of young adults leaving, in much hurry,
hurts us as the ones that remain become grey and blurry.
We are living in a permanent winter and we have high roads,
that wind and curve. Dangerous when icy. veins filled with
heavy loads and nodding verve.
I live a breath's away from the oldest river in the entire world.
I can't touch Roman ruins with my hands, or
sift through the Dead Sea and float on salt above sand.
I can't touch the hill where Jesus may have died,
I don't know what it feels like to hold history as pride.
But our trees even when green have a dusty coal darkened sheen.
Summer is overgrowth from the Springtime rains.
The highest fatal overdose rate in the entire United States.

Where once we built bridges to close in the gap of travel.
We unzip black bags with rigs and object with obvious cavil.
Our industry is old, the world is moving on from coal.
For better, to be sure, but in the meantime we grow cold.
Not from lack of heat, we can boil our spoons just fine.
But we need a replacement from shaft or the mountaintop mine.
Let us worry about beauty again,
let us treat addiction with correction instead of levying it as sin.
Remove the pantomiming politician speak
of addicts or the sick as being weak.

Let's find ourselves again, West Virginia. You're the only home I've known.
Childhood summertimes sat beneath canopies of caterpillar home,
the happy baby butterflies eating leaves so more sun could shone.
Walking sticks used to play with me in my yard,
and at nighttime I'd still be outside mouth agape at the stars.
Evening meant lightning bugs and I'd capture a few in the cup of my hands.
There was a whimsy to how nature responded to us,
how bees would bumble and land,
on the dandelions whose seeds I'd spread as I blew on their white
polyp heads.
Maybe it's nostalgia and my memories are tinted rosy.
The smell of wood stoves burning in winter,
the crispness of autumn breezes felt cozy.
There was a trust held in communities, or maybe I was naïve.
Some of my friends made a choice and moved.
Others among us took a more permanent leave.
My brother, too. He himself got in a lot of trouble.
Over the cotton swab boiled to a bubble.
He died when I was young so maybe everybody is right.
It's all sentimentality and a lot of lonely nights.
But does the past being ****** up make the worsening now fine?

I live a breath's away from the oldest river and mountain range.
I live with the highest fatal overdose rate in the United States.
there's much debate as to whether the New River or the Appalachian/Blue Ridge/Allegheny mountains are, in fact, the oldest.
there is, however, no debate as to whether or not West Virginia (WV) holds the highest fatal overdose rate in the US

In 2010 WV held one of the highest fatal overdose rates,
By 2017 much of the country's overdose rates increased
WV's 2010 numbers are higher than 60% of the country's 2017 numbers,
and WV's 2017 are higher than everybody else's.

This is not to meant to take away the pain that's transcended broadly throughout the country. This is not meant to be diminishing, not even remotely, but it is meant to shine a solemn light.

I'm sorry for those of you that may know somebody who has passed on from drugs, or that may be currently struggling with their addictions. Whether it's opiates, alcohol, or prescriptions.
But let's try to remove some of the stigma surrounding addiction.

Forgive some stolen money.
Avoid gossip and rumor.
Reach out to somebody who may have fallen away from the crowd.
I'd much rather live with an addict than haunted by a ghost.

thank you for reading
Jonathan Surname Aug 2018
To the limits!
And the heaves are harmed, in our lungs
and arms. Tendons flexed on their utmost,
and breath at play in the drowned coast.

To the shores!
And the leaves are left as specks of colour,
from the moors.
and vacations left the hinterlands
of the decayed, breathless holler.

For the greater good we stood as imagined heroes,
Yet for happenstance to lend a chance in our woes,
required a great many motifs
to clamour and climb
In glamourous time
to the raised butte
of a finishing sublime.

Modulate the past and harmonize the future.
Together tapestry'd, akin to patchwork suture.

We weren't raised this way.
To remain forever at play, workhorses neigh.
And sawing brilliance and sawdust eyes,
rapier wit with no equal.
But together a two-parter,
to the shores to see the sea quell.

Wildfire lick like lit flame.
Burn it all down and give me the blame.
It's a carried burden worth the worry.

In mountains some exist as prideful barons.
Barring the loss of their barren,
their smiles turn smirks of heathen carrions.
Which is fine, and the motif licks again.
And the motive is sublime; it's only sin.

Cherish the children and their rue of thresher-born,
Thomas Ligotti and his party of philosophy,
but I'm too caught in histrionics to allow the matter
to matter.
Beyond the kicking feet of the mirthful pitter-patter,
pitted against the coming solstice of time saving;
forward and back and ouroboros we may.
Hold on tight to this singular day.
Ignorant of the causes of our own decay.
Lost during summers covered in spittle and seaspray.
Only to mount a return, a loss,
to the area most unaccepting of the cost.

To the mountaintops!
**** what you see, and reap what you sow.
Push the mountains down into the crow,
and call out for the all the denizens below,
"Here's another landslide." As you call; Heave, and **.
Pile them neat and plant a seed,
of a tree that hasn't belonged or had a chirped song
in a placidity.
Awareness for a dying region

https://i.imgur.com/qUkjevo.jpg
duncan Jun 2018
i am stuck in a
tangerine dream.
a breath of fresh air
or just air
that seems fresh
to me.

red face
quilled with ice cold
water.

there is only beauty
between the cracks
of contrast.

//

i cant call myself
a poet
if i dont tell you
that her lips
look soft.

they could heal me
like a bandaid
and hurt just as much
to peel off.

it doesnt feel like
virginia yet.
maybe only
vermont
or conneticut.

but im ready
to go home
if home feels
like it used to.
stephanie Jun 2018
the roads always take us
back to west virginia.
the hills we climb lead
to impeccable views,
beautiful hidden scenery
only we knew how to find.
highways became one-lane roads
the gravel washing out,
half-a-million potholes
when you drive on a hillside
like that,
the same rush comes
that you get when you look
over the side of a rollercoaster cart.
but when you’re with your best friend,
the rush turns to comfort.
“if we were to fall off the side of this cliff, I’m glad I’m with you.”  

14:23 5/31/2018
duncan Apr 2018
i will never go to virginia.
because in my mind it loves me
and i love virginia.

and ive never been
and ill never go.

green on the eyes,
warm on the flesh.
how could i burden such a place
with my expectations
my preconceived notions
with no preconception.

i know nothing about virginia
it can be anything i want it to.
beauty incarnated in a long narrow field
empty as **** below.
a blank cheque just waiting for me to fall in love.
i wont let it fool me.
Shane Leigh Mar 2018
Dear Jane,
Sorry this didn’t reach ya in time;
Sorry I couldn’t leave on better terms;
Sorry for leavin' ya alone in Virginia ...

                   Dear Jane,
                   Did my last letter get to ya alright?
                   Did you come in happy when ya realized it was me?
                   Jane ... do ya miss me?

       Dear Jane,
       Notes can't explain how much I miss ya;
       there are voids that were occupied by you
       that take up so much space here.
       I can’t stay here because you ain't here;
       but I can’t go back to Virginia.

Dear sis,
I miss ya without reason
and I can’t remember what it was we fought for,
somethin' petty I imagine.
Nothin' compares to this emptiness I feel,
but I’m tellin’ ya
I can’t stay here,
but I won't go back to Virginia -
I’d have to say goodbye again.

Dear Jane,
It’s been 3 years ...
Are those flowers doin' alright?
Of course they are.
I can’t say goodbye to you again Jane,
but here I am.
Your tombstone doesn’t fit ya sis,
but I'm happy you died in your home,
on your bed,
all nestled up in the heartland of Virginia.
© Shane Leigh
Enjoy (:
This is dedicated to one of my close friends. Her sister and I weren’t very close but I still feel a great loss and I know my friend is. I will grieve with you for as long as you need me to.
duncan Feb 2018
i need virginia.
and so do you.

virginia is the flickering lights
of an emergency room vacation.

virginia is the bruise on your cheek
from a cafe seizure.

virginia is the moment you realized
you changed your favorite color, without ever asking yourself first.

virginia is understanding that nothing we do will ever change what will be.

virginia is your pink wet tongue frozen
to the telephone poll.

virginia is the moment at the funeral
when you realize you've never seen a dead body before.

virginia is all those times you stole lighters from the corner store
and all the times you never got caught.

virginia is the woman you sleep with, after you crash your car on the freeway.

virginia is who you call on the phone, when you think it's all over.

virginia is a story worth telling.
let it breathe.
let it breathe.
let it breathe
if everything goes according to plan for me, this might make more sense to you some day.
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