[singing at my brother’s wedding with the old timers. I am the small person with the tamporine. I left my banjo at home.]

I hear your voice singing

among these hills,

along these highways,



of young men on horses

and women sewing dresses,

singing of tobacco hoeing

and coal burning stoves


one room school houses

and church bells ringing,

of creek baptizings,

dinner on the ground

and brush arbor meetings,


[Family resting on top a pile of sugar cane during molasses making. Taken by Pearl Campbell some time in the 1950s.]

I hear your melodies

played on the mandolin,

fiddle, guitar and violin

or sometimes

a lone dulcimer haunting

these valleys

like orphaned bagpipes,

crying for their

momma highlands.


[my nephew near one of many natural bridges, photo taken by me]

T.V.’s blaring,

cell phones ringing,

motors racing

and machines raging

cannot drown you out

so long as this body


8 thoughts on “Appalachia

  1. Nochipa,

    As always reading your beautiful words and seeing these
    images enriched me, as I read this the morning, I felt the wind in my hair, the red clay dirt of my youth, I saw the number 5 wash tub, that my Granny used for our first swimming pool, the creeks we explored, the hills we claimed and the quiet peace of the pine forest that surround me, grounded me and perhaps formed me. Thank you for allowing me the privilege of experiencing your world.

    wishing you a glorious day

    🙂 brenda

  2. Thanks, Brenda, I do very much appreciate your coming to visit me and your kind words. It means very much to me to know that my poetry has touched someone in a place where they live or have lived during their lives.


  3. I hear songs of lament
    I hear songs of anger
    As theives and yellow monsters
    Steal mountain tops
    As lakes of bile pollute rivers
    and streams
    As arrogant bastards hide their profane nature beneath high tension power lines and acid rain
    Sorry for ranting but I get pissed off about what is happening there

  4. ozymandiaz,

    I could not say it better myself. You are singing my song. There is nothing that can break a heart like seeing a majestic mountain brought down to just another spot on the road. Just one hour east of me the water is so tainted that you dare not drink it. The cancer rate is abnormally high. Respitory problems run amuck and yet, the Coal companies are allowed to continue full throttle…I’d better quit before I really get up on my little soap box. Thank you so very much.


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