Christmas Eve in Kanawha Valley by John Robinson

Christmas Eve in the Kanawha Valley

Half-slumbered in warmth
I watched sprawling, snow-layered branches
pass above the car.
As my mother drove,
a Zippo sparked in the window,
scent of my father’s Old Spice mingled with smoke.

Pasture hills were covered white as pearl
with evening clouds trailing East.
“Silent Night” or Country radio filled the air.
Curves became dreamlike rhythms
of familiar movement and sound,
tones deep as any mind could wish to hold forever.

Highway traffic slowed to forty-five,
rarely a set of headlights met us in this frozen world
where houses trimmed with lights
lit the coming dimness
as twilight settled over Kanawha valley.
Catharsis was a word in books.
I never thought about the politics of Santa Claus or Frosty.

And from the many distant windows
variant images of tinseled trees,
softly muted and blurred in their glowing,
bore the solemn-ness of careful decoration.
In town,
salt trucks plowed the streets beneath low clouds
where trapped light fell through flurried wind
like a snow-globe shook.
Glass was not an empty metaphor.



John Timothy Robinson is a traditional citizen and graduate of the Marshall University Creative Writing program in Huntington, West Virginia with a Regent’s Degree.  He has an interest in Critical Theory of poetry and American Formalism.  John is also a twelve-year educator for Mason County Schools in Mason County, WV.  Past and forthcoming work; Blue Collar Review, Kestrel, California Quarterly, Ship of Fools, Floyd County Moonshine, Wild Violet Magazine, POEM, Ibbetson Street Press, The Iconoclast, Pulsar Poetry Magazine, The Society of Classical Poets.org, The South Carolina Review and A Time of Singing.  

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