Share https://www.terrain.org/mp3/2017/aug/Agodon_DarlingAmerica.mp3 Darling America, I’ve crossed out ocean and written Jesus, crossed out sky and have written sky. There are blueberries in the crosshairs of a gun. There’s a Statue of Liberty figurine missing her torch—this is America being America, licking its feet or it will die trying. We are alone and afraid of heights, having an existential crisis on the edge of a cliff. Listen, the dolls in my dollhouse are being deported and the landlord is typing in all caps. How do we recognize humanity when we’re just a name on a screen? An avatar of a flag or resist, a red cap or a pink hat? We’re holding the door for people, until we know how they voted then we’re tripping each other into the future, getting high off how fast they fall. Fear—it’s so much easier to believe the shaking is normal, so let’s put the chains on the tires— we’ve got four more miles—and we have no idea how this will work out, but darling, I’ve got my senators on redial, a sidecar filled with cocktails, and my beautiful friends, let’s watch the sunrise together as we reattach the torch to liberty, eat the blueberries under the sigh of a mushroom cloud sky. Kelli Russell Agodon is the author of six books and the co-founder of Two Sylvias Press. Her most recent book, Hourglass Museum (White Pine Press, 2014), was a finalist for the Washington State Book Award and shortlisted for the Julie Suk Prize in Poetry. Her other books include The Daily Poet: Day-By-Day Prompts For Your Writing Practice, Fire On Her Tongue: An Anthology of Contemporary Women’s Poetry, and Letters from the Emily Dickinson Room, winner of the Foreword Book of the Year Prize for poetry and a finalist for the Washington State Book Award. She lives in a sleepy seaside town in the Pacific Northwest where she is an avid paddleboarder and hiker. Header photo of Statue of Liberty by ParentRap, courtesy Pixabay. Photo of Kelli Russell Agodon by Ronda Broatch. Read more new Letters to America in Dear America: Letters of Hope, Habitat, Defiance, and Democracy, published by Terrain.org and Trinity University Press.