How the west was won

It wasn’t with your guns the west was won,
it was the concept that our soil was owned,
it could be fenced, divided, never shared.

But buffalo need water, need to graze.
That field of yours gave corn
you traded into bucks (green for green)
and me… you dulled with whiskey.

But what was won for you?
When fences rust, and soil has turned to sand
I see you leave, a dust-cloud in the setting sun.

I’m left to mend your fences, not the earth.
You turned our greens to desert when you left
to once again move further west.

© Madison Woods

© Madison Woods

The picture this week just begged for poetry.. my excuses to all coming here looking for fiction. I don’t think it needs any further explaining. This is also part of my effort to write 30 poems for April.

Friday Fictioneers is run by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields and every week we get a new picture where we should find a story in the image. I always try to write exactly 100 words. Let me also do some add for our prompt that we run every second week at dVerse. Write 44 words including one selected word. We call it the Quadrille.. come dance with us.



April 20, 2016

105 responses to “How the west was won

  1. Nicely done, I enjoyed reading it with a western laid back texan drawl 🙂 poetry helped. Good one.

  2. Beautiful Bjorn! A wonerful peice of poetry showing how greed and the need to claim everything in sight and then simply walk away leaving a barren land! Loved it! Heidi 🙂

  3. Perhaps this isn’t “fiction” in a traditional sense, but even if you hadn’t “formed” it with the line breaks and stanzas, it would still qualify as a story – because the elegance of the words, however poetic, still read a a complete story – beginning, middle and end. And it is most powerfully well done 🙂

  4. Ah you’ve given a new slant to how the west was “won.” So very well done. And, smirk here, we seem to think alike sometimes, my friend. I actually just posted a haibun for this photo — but in the explanation said that the first three paragraphs were the fiction (99 words) and the following haiku was for NaPoWriMo 🙂 ….and to think that I didn’t even know what a haibun was til I joined dVerse 🙂

  5. Excellent, Bjorn. It makes my heart ache. What would world be like without fences and borders. We seem to get farther away from that all the time.

  6. Bang-On! A powerful narrative conveyed brilliantly though poetry. – a compelling literary combo pulled off really, really well. Wonderful writing!

  7. An unexpected take on the prompt and a powerful poem that makes us reflect on our history.

  8. Beautiful and sad. Fences truly changed everything. People often try to be so possessive of the earth. Tis only ours to care for a little while before it passes on to someone else.

  9. It was shameful the way the Native Americans were treated in the U.S. But it was also shameful the way the settlers were encouraged to mistreat the land. It was no wonder it ended up a dust bowl. Well done, Bjorn. —- Suzanne

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