Marietta Home Tour


Who would have imagined such culture and beauty

behind the façade of Appalachia?

Regal, slender, grey-haired matrons glide through homes

of original rooms with ten-foot ceilings of original plasterwork relief,

original iron fireplaces, original heavy pocket doors, arched windows, inlaid floors,

spiraling staircases and then on back to the remodeled kitchen and den,

blazing with light and color, cooking islands, and built-ins, flat screen TVs, gas ranges

and subzero refrigerators and then out onto the screened-in, bright, airy patio

overlooking a spacious backyard with a 150-year-old oak, a hanging swing

and carefully tended gardens, all quiet and tranquil on an avenue

that is brick and broad and tree-lined with branches that interlock overhead.


Then, of course, across the street

the scrawny homeowner with his shirt off,

waist length white beard and ponytail

is mowing his small patch of lawn

with a sputtering machine

on a  humid afternoon.


Even in the towns, it’s ridges and hollers,

ridges and hollers,

ridges and hollers…

like the refrain of an old fiddle tune

reverberating back generations.