The Alabama woods, my first art museum, are browning. The grass in my family’s little hamlet of 100 souls no longer clothes itself in morning dew. The morning air no longer turns blue regularly between the loblolly pines. The next crop of okra and field peas hasn’t been planted in twenty years. Main Street, in the big town down the way, folded to Walmart’s half-priced, quarter-made imitations. I’m 33. I’ve seen most of those dearest to me from back home to their graves. I long for the rusted, browning stories of the old folks’ steel mill escapades up Nof’. Familiarity lingers in the stench of trees boiling in a rage of sulfuric acid: the paper mills are always hiring. Oil companies cut up my swamps into Swiss cheese to get to the Gulf faster, leaving all who live there turning and twisting, vulnerable to ever more forceful hurricanes.
You’ll forgive me if I want to destroy things.