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2020 Scholastic Writing Award, Gold Key Winner


Old Woman Mountain watches me with big river eyes, my mother of wisdom. Her soft snowflake kisses guide my little finger tips, a colossal mess of loose blonde curls and criss-crossed shoelaces. Old Woman Mountain picks me up and kisses my bruises and tells me to lose myself in icy cold skies. She walked me through middle school hall-ways, reminding that beauty is so much more than skin tight black dresses and photoshopped waists. Old Woman Mountain cries waterfalls as she teaches that the truly beautiful stand tall and hold souls and never let go. 

Old Woman Mountain, whose lips meet stars, watched over the death of my first big black dog and held the pitter-patter of my heart as it has fallen in and out with the thought of love. She holds my blister covered hands as those boys come and go and go and come. Her ever changing landscape of wilting sunflowers and drip-drop dancing of fall leaves kisses my tears good-bye. Old Woman Mountain, with her crashing avalanches and cascading rainfall, breathes freedom into my lungs and wisdom into my soul. Old Woman Mountain, who never backs down and never looks back, covered in jagged edges and open wounds, teaches me to love my own roughness. My child, she whispers against starry midnight skies, we are the apex of rugged femininity. Old Woman Mountain, whose wildness is now my wildness, who knows no fear and has no enemies. Old Woman Mountain, my old woman mountain. I am forever yours. 

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