J. M. Strother
I know these hills, these valleys,
Those old familiar trees.
I know the house in yonder field,
The smell upon the breeze.
I know these roads I walk down now,
The byways of my youth,
My spirits rise as I approach
That old familiar roof.
And as I tread upon these feet,
Which have seen many a weary mile,
I see an old and familiar face
That greets me with a smile.
As I round the final curve in
This path that I now roam,
My heart swells in knowledge that
I am almost home.
Not all of my poetry is free verse. This is a rather old poem of mine, and I included it here because it also happens to be one of my personal favorites. As I mentioned at the beginning of the month my poetry is often an emotional outpouring triggered by some outside stimulus, such as a news story. Like many people, I was gripped by the rescue of Jessica Lynch from an Iraqi hospital in 2003. I wrote this poem while out walking the dog, trying to imagine how she must feel coming home in the midst of the firestorm of media coverage around her. I suspect her thoughts may not have been too far from my imagining. Of course at the time I did not realize that her feet required follow-on surgery, and she probably wasn’t doing much walking – except of course metaphorically.
© 2003, 2011 by J. M. Strother, all rights reserved.
Photo by Hubert Stoffels via Flickr Creative Commons.