They call them the Harmony mines,
these shafts plunged deep into
Virginia’s earth.
Nothing harmonious about the way
they forced her to yield her treasure
then hurried
from the devastation and disarray,
leaving her plundered, gaping,
with only a
spiteful wind to witness the outrage,
sauntering, probing the evidence
of her ruin:
a water bottle, a single boot, the
brittle bits of plastic men leave in
their wake.

Among the fallen concrete slabs
and shattered glass a signboard
still proclaims
the ghostly miners’ mantra:
I will not get injured today.
But hear the
rig creak and groan; see how
the paved ramp that led them
underground
slants into jumbled darkness.
At the lift the hand piece of
the phone
swings on its fraying cord,
the lifeline useless and all
communication ended.

Look to the wide, impartial sky;
the upturned bowl of periwinkle
blue ignores
the clutter spilled below, the
gouged-out ground and wrecked
remains of
greedy industry. It smiles on poor
Virginia as she mends, regains
her dignity.
Take heart, it seems to say, these
mortals are but passing through,
afraid to face
the awful truth that in the end
it’s you who plays the final card,
restoring harmony.

Categories: BLOG: On my mind

One Response so far.


  1. Noelene says:

    An awful truth of wrecked remains, superbly observed, exquisitely told. Thank you.

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