O beautiful, for the seats in the rental car are spacious
and wanderlust is winking in the moonless skies.
It’s the day before the 4th of July.
We’ve been stuck in our work-weeks like bees in amber;
even the Gulf with its kitten-cat waves can’t free us.
The grain of the dashboard gleams as we pack the car
in the purple, pre-dawn light. The highway hums
its serenade, old song of the open, etcetera.
We’re bound for mountains with just an old school Triptik;
for the majesty of grazing cows, the Eastern bluebird, the rhododendrons,
and once past Atlanta, fruited with drivers illegally texting,
we can just plain breathe.
Up along HWY 441, we feel our bodies returning.
You can still recognize God’s America, even
with the new WalMart glowing on the hill and KFC in the valley.
God himself must have shed every expectation,
so when we make the turn onto Coweeta Church Road
and finally hear the grace-notes of cicadas
and see the mountains crowned with rain
and know the fireworks will be spoiled tomorrow,
even so, we think it is good.
The car bounces up the mountain until we park
at the house poised on the very peak. Here,
let us join the brotherhood of dropouts for the long holiday weekend.
Fugitives from a sea of purposes and connections,
let us fix our eyes on the purple mountains,
let us gaze on nothing but you, Oh Beautiful.