15 January 2014

A Love Letter to My State

Dear West Virginia,

I love you.  This may come as forward, but I've been feeling this way for as long as I can remember.  I think my flirtation became an adoration when my parents packed myself and 2 sisters up in the backseat of the pickup truck and explored every majesty you have to offer on a week long discovery tour of this place we were blessed to call home. 

I profess my love with a Facebook photo album titled, "I LOVE WV," an iTunes playlist that exclusively has songs with your great name in it, my license plate that is proudly displayed in my apartment, and although a new state has had to take its place legally on my car's bumper I've added an, "I LOVE WV" bumper sticker to showcase where my real allegiance lies.  In short, if one has met me, they know I'm a West Virginian, so they know you too.

I played outside until the street lights came on, went to the drive-in with my friends, and collected can goods for the needy with my wagon door-to-door.  I didn't grow up in 1952.  I grew up in West Virginia.

I don't just love you because you're beautiful, although you are stunning with your copper leaves and majestic peaks.  I don't just love you because you're selfless, although you do give of your natural resources freely.  I don't just love you because you're fun, although you are a guaranteed good time with your ski slopes, rock climbs, and whitewater.

I love you because you hold everyone I hold dear.  I love you because when I'm lost in this big scary world, you make me feel found.  I love you because you will eternally be home to me.

Because I love you, I want to protect you.  I want to keep you safe from those who desire to harm you, and those who want to sell you to the highest bidder.

I want to prevent your mountains from being hacked off and thrown in streams, your rivers from being poisoned with chemicals, and your land from being fracked.  I want to prevent toxic waste from being stored in slurries above school houses, in leaky, rusty, unchecked containers near the river, and in the land under our very own homes.

I want the best for you West Virginia, because you've given your best to me.

Sincerely yours,


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