I am home in Elkins, and reflecting on having been invited to play Poetry Out Loud: National Recitation Contest. It was incredible to see the talent coming out of West Virginia. I met and heard young, vibrant, amazing people from almost every county in the state. West Virginia poet laureate Marc Harshman gave us some of his poetry, interspersed with beautiful homages to the words of Irene McKinney and Louise McNeill, two of my favourite Appalachian poets.
Everyday I am thankful to get to know the incredible people of this state. Congratulations to Neely Seams, winner of the State competition. But more than that, congratulations to all who participated and spoke. Your voice matters. Keep speaking loud. Montani Semper Liberi!