About Me

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I'm an author, historian (Ph.D., WVU), musician, professor, and mountaineer. I have published two books, To Live Again, a classical myth set in contemporary Appalachia, and Defending the Homeland, a collection of essays on radicalism and national security. Welcome to my blog.

Friday, September 4, 2009

An Old Poem

This is one of my very first publications – a poem I wrote way back in the early fall of 1999. It recalls an old black and white portrait of a couple (family ancestors, I was told) at my grandparents’ house. The portrait hanged in an isolated room upstairs and it was so old that the couple in the picture looked like ghosts. Some of the grandkids were so freaked out by it that they were too scared to enter the room. Even though it frightened me as a little kid, I still couldn’t keep myself from going in and taking a peak. So I wrote a poem about it and decided to post it here on its tenth anniversary. . . .

The Dead Man on the Wall

The dead man on the wall
and his wife stare at me.
In a little room upstairs
in my grandmother’s house
They wait for me behind a closed door
with possum’s eyes
and call to me from up the stairs.
I always go.
Sitting in the room,
wood creaks and my toy red truck
rolls across the floor.
My back itches and the possum’s eyes
crawl up to rest on my shoulder
I always look back,
and behold their decaying cage
of wood and print
Then comes the grin.
How does it form?
Down the steps again.

                                                                                 September 1999

1 comment:

  1. About time for a new post....maybe something on Charled Darwin's brother Frank.