The Alligator “Let’s go see the alligator!” my grandfather called to me, and I came running. He was already choosing a hat from the hundred crammed on a rack by the sliding glass door. He slid the door open and in a second he’d be gone and I’d better hurry up and put some shoes… Read More The Alligator (and The Bone Man) | by Margaret Ward McClain
In a recent public conversation about young educated people leaving West Virginia to find their fortunes elsewhere, I heard someone say, “Maybe someday they will appreciate the security of these mountains.” The word security struck me as strange, and so I asked the speaker what she meant. “That word you used, security, why did you… Read More The Long Road to the Last Goodbye (conclusion)
As inelegant as it is, here I must say that not all things are wrong. There are many hard and beautiful truths in a West Virginia life that other places may never know. I am reminded of the betrayals of a true love. Not much is lost when you never cared, but there is a… Read More The Long Road to the Last Goodbye (part 3)
West Virginia has a long history of conflict. The conflicts are documented in our history books and highlight near-wars like the Battle of Blair Mountain and the textbook controversy that rocked Kanawha County in the 1970s. In these kinds of fights guns are fired; sometimes, people die; and almost always there is a gouged scar… Read More The Long Road to the Last Goodbye (part 2)
Following is a spontaneous first draft intro for my next creative nonficition packet submission. It will get better. But one of my favorite parts about pursuing my MFA is to just sit down and let it out. I am leaving West Virginia. It is not the first time, but it will be the last time.… Read More The Long Road to the Last Goodbye
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance. – Ecclesiastes… Read More To Everything, Turn.
Lopaz And then the Lamb invited me to look, and I beheld a faithful flowing steed with one glorious hoof atop the Book my life faithfully kept in word and deed. My ears perceived a gentle rising call emitted from a distant room beyond my sight, and all those lost to me were tall and… Read More Lopaz | a sonnet for my grandfather