Illinois At Sunrise

December 10, 2021

I came through Illinois at sunrise
Just before the rays burned through the fog.
And peeking through it was the brown grass of the plains,
Of the land,
Of the roofs of houses, of homes,
Of trees breathed up at God’s command.

I get a little wordy sometimes,
But I kept a lot inside this trip.
All I said were hello’s and goodbye’s
Between biting my bleeding lips.

I came through St. Louis just before breakfast,
And the sun bounced off the Arch.
But after the Gateway, I saw only green,
The color of pride, goodbyes, and loyalty––
To everyone but my family.

I dreamed through Kentucky and opened my eyes
Around Nashville.
Circling on the interstate the city lights reminded me of him,
Of the drinks he drank here,
The sleep he slept here.

But I remember that scene from that really sad movie,
When the stars came through the storming clouds,
And I realized I hadn’t seen them so clearly since the
Last time I was home bound.
Because 4am is quiet,
When all the loud things go to sleep,
When I put down my memory of you
And left it way back in Missouri.


M.M. Cochran is a YA writer and author of Between the Ocean and the Stars (summer 2022). With an educational background in English and creative writing, she has worked in the journalism industry, as well as the agenting and publishing industry, and she is currently a freelance book editor for her service, Elegant Editing. Now pursuing a career in publishing and becoming a full-time novelist, she spends most of her time editing and writing in her novels. Meanwhile, you can find M.M. collecting coffee mugs or slipping into an oversized sweater, wishing for a white winter.

Featured image by Jessica Ruscello on Unsplash