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. . .A Country Store's Dying Words

Updated on May 11, 2012

The sad death of our country stores

whose place will never be filled by modern man.
whose place will never be filled by modern man.

Here I die slowly by night. My doors ajar, drafts at ease

Voices trail inside my timbered grooves so sweet,

There's grandpa William, who barely gets by to eat

Oh the pain of little Zelma Katherine no shoes on bloody feet.

In days of youth, I stood proud listening to the older ones proud

Of courtin' the girls, shooting the squirrels, letting breath slowly die.

My food was sweet. I gave my seat, to travelin' bo's so sad.

From man to man, and hand to hand, never wasting life's crusts I had.

I wasn't named. Not even a birth. But "their" hearts beat for me

Pourin' rains, blues with pains, and a couple by the heat.

A pair of eyes, hopeful eyes, staring off to where no one sees.

A wrinkled hand, a nameless man, and I watched his head bow low.

His land was raped by greedy plans. His faith now mere sand.

I stood. I watched. I welcomed. Until the day "they" didn't come.

Tarnished seed, rotting meat and milk for baby's lip.

Some needful dirt, a laugh, a hurt. An arm around a corpse.

My days are done. I die with the sun. And recall "his" first love.

His eyes were sharp. His tune by harp, and ignorant hope a-bloom.

There are his kids. "Their" kids and death bids at the door.

Another meal. Another appeal, to keep "my" foundation strong.

Alas the time. The acursed sweet time. Slow and sure

One last cent. The buyer's last cent. My door is being shut.

The dust, the patient dust. Now it's "his" turn to dance.

I've had my way. Built my days. And rot alone with you.

What tales this frame could tell

of men, women, kids, and animals sick and well.
of men, women, kids, and animals sick and well.


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    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      6 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama


      Your comments always make chills run up my spine. I appreciate you, your friendship and your comments. Take care.


    • catgypsy profile image


      6 years ago from the South

      Very touching, Kenneth!

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      6 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      My Dear shea . . .oh so faithful and loyal you are to me. I truly savor your friendship. You have been with me from the beginning of our "ride" on hubs.

      And never think that YOU are not appreciated by ME. And never let it enter your mind that YOUR name is never mentioned at the Throne of God when I pray.

      You are a much-valued and very-loved FRIEND.


    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      6 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Hi, lastheart

      Thank you, dear friend, for the nice compliment. YOU have the BEST weekend ever. I mean it. And if applicable, Happy Mother's Day.

      Visit again with me soon.


    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      6 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Hello, highvoltagewriter,

      I truly appreciate your input on this hub that was WORK in the finest sense of the word.

      Guess thats why I felt so weak yesterday when this was finished.

      Again, thank you and I hope that all things good happen to you.


    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      6 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      May 12

      Dearest Lucky Cats/Kathy . . ."I" am completely overwhelmed by YOUR comments and compliments. HONEST. I do not know the proper reaction but saying THANK YOU SO MUCH just for being so nice, sweet, caring and talented.

      I WILL NOT, anyway soon, forget YOU or your sweet comments.

      I promise. May I say Happy Mother's Day to you?


    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      6 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      May 12

      Dear annaw . . .Thank you sincerely for your comment. I appreciate how sweet you and all of my female followers really are.

      I dont have the proper words to say "thanks," to you, but I do appreciate YOU a lot.


    • shea duane profile image

      shea duane 

      6 years ago from new jersey

      Wow, Ken... wow. So intense. This poem moved me.

    • Lastheart profile image

      Maria Magdalena Ruiz O'Farrill 

      6 years ago from Borikén the great land of the valiant and noble Lord

      I love the title and the words are wonderful. I love the theme very much. Great work.

    • Highvoltagewriter profile image

      William Benner 

      6 years ago from Savannah GA.

      Great job on this!

    • Lucky Cats profile image


      6 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

      Oh my goodness! Kenneth! You've created such sumptuous offering of so touching and colorful memories. Stories within the story...all that has passed before, alongside and within the walls of this forgotten shelter...of sustenance, of comfort, shielding the two from the cold, feeding the hungry, allowing souls to relax within safe walls. This IS BEAUTIFUL...beautiful! Kenneth! I am awestruck.

      And then..."progress!" The ruination of decades of history, security, familiaity...with the stroke of a pen and a wad of cash...erases our true expression in favor of a facade...even the thrown away meal as others leave it wrecked and ruined for naught.

      Absolutely LOVE this Kenneth.

      UP Beautiful Awesome and useful for those who take the time to realize the depth of this.


    • annaw profile image


      6 years ago from North Texas



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