Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Snapshot of America


I arrived in darkness, to the white brick church. Already, the gathering snaking down the uneven sidewalk, quietly murmuring from beneath its huddled silhouette, before reaching the gravel lot.
In the morning chill, curls of steam hang like question marks above warm coffee.
While the doors wait to be opened from within.

Of the many assembled here, I know just a few--
faces that have grown old since the years of ball games, Sunday school and holiday concerts.
The banker, crisply creased and spit-polished, his new car flanked by assorted pick-ups and a large rig left idling as we stand in the dark, checks his watch repeatedly. In black sneakers peeking from beneath a checkered skirt, a woman with long white hair, drawn back and up, stands in the comfort of her husband’s large frame. His gnarled hands, wrapped around the grip of a cane.
Beside them, young women with name badges on brightly-colored smocks.

We have all come here to cast our vote, this community of all shapes and sizes.
As the sun tentatively rises on this new day, the doors open.
This is the moment that captures America.

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13 comments:

bobbie said...

A beautiful post!

KGMom said...

I just got back from voting--in and out. Although I was a higher number than any of the really old ladies tending things could remember!
Lucky you--you got a sticker. We don't get those, but we should.
It is indeed a privilege--thank goodness this year someone sparked people's interest.

Kay Dennison said...

This lovely. This is really America!

Sandy Maudlin said...

THANKS!

NCmountainwoman said...

Oh, indeed this does capture all that is right with America. Nice post.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I saw much of the same scene this morning Nina. I wasn't out quite as early but I was quite taken by the diverse group of people gathered at the voting pole where I voted.

Robert V. Sobczak said...

It's one way that I can remember my life: by the elections that I voted in. I always feel good after I vote, in this case an early ballot in Florida.

Mary said...

Nina,

So nice. It's what it's all about. Our right and privilege.

That last photo says so much.

Mary

Marvin said...

I voted even though I knew my vote was a futile gesture that wasn't going to make a bit of difference in the outcome in my prescient, county or state. Voting made a difference to me.

nina said...

Marvin--that's it exactly.
We can't determine the acts of others, but when that final tally is official, my vote will be recorded.
Even if I am the solitary voice, I will be heard.

Daydreamer said...

Very nice!

Gretchen said...

Beautiful photo and great post. The election is over and now the real work begins.

suziam said...

Thank you so much for the poems and the photos. It IS a great privilege to vote. It always makes me feel so good -- about myself and my country.