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From Not Knowing . . . To Confluence

From April 30th to May 18th, Sarah Elizabeth and Ron Whitehead hiked over 300 miles from Cherokee Park in Louisville to the confluence of the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers. Through the backroads, railroads tracks and sacred trails Sarah and Ron went searching for the lost and forgotten people and places of western Kentucky.the lost and forgotten they found and now remember.

19 days, 14 counties, 325 miles

western Kentucky hillbillies we hike on foot
step by step crossing Kentucky paradise

backroads and railroads for 19 days, 14 counties,
325 miles we search for our lost and forgotten

ancestors Whiteheads Renders Burkeys Abernathys
Cherokee Trail of Tears Mantle Rock stones piled

on stones graves hundreds dead where what when
how why where did they go what stories did they

take with them when did they depart how did they
live love die why have they been forgotten Sarah

and I traveled western Kentucky backroads and
railroads 14 counties: Jefferson, Hardin, Meade,

Breckinridge, Hancock, Ohio (my home), McLean,
Hopkins (not friendly cept for one coal miner),

Caldwell, Crittenden, Livingston, McCracken,
Ballard (Sarah's home) and towns and towns:

Louisville, West Point, Ekron, Irvington, Hardinsburg,
McQuady, Fordsville, Dundee, Hartford, Centertown

(my home), Matanzas, Island, Sacramento, Madisonville,
Beulah, Fredonia, Marion, Mantle Rock, Birdsville,

Smithland, Paducah, Woodville (Sarah's home), Kevil,
LaCenter, Barlow, Wickliffe and searching for our

lost and forgotten ancestors hiking through Ohio
and Ballard counties Sarah writes When The Redbuds

Bloom a heart wrenching song that best tells our
story our lifelong quest pressed into 19 days, 14

counties, 325 miles 40 miles on railroads bridges
without anything to hold onto rise over raging

rivers all spilling into the Ohio oh great river which
finally confluences with the Mississippi at Fort

Defiance the end we touch the soft waters and
drink the warm breezes this after Wicliffe Mounds

the ancient Mississipian Tribe in Rosine on the
front porch of Bill Monroe's old homeplace Sarah

sang and played guitar then we fiddled on Jerusalem
Ridge blackberries honeysuckle and ticks thick

generations of families pioneers plant corn by hand
gift of the native peoples families and friends opened

their homes their hearts farmers coal miners construction
workers mechanics bootleggers holy roller preachers

and always strong strong women the toothless the
downtrodden offered us rides in broken down trucks

and cars giant SUVs didn't wave swerved closer to us
how dare we walk on their roads when no family and

friends we slept in motels The James Madison Inn for
the down and out and Sarah the superior scout finds

us water and late at night she breaks into Crossroads
Baptist churches we eat their applesauce drink their water

where's the wine and for two hours we sleep on the
hardest concrete floors west of the Appalachians onward

before dawn hike 35 miles for days few houses backwoods
growling of cougar or bear no stores record breaking heat

a farmer stops and gives us 4 Fanta orange drinks a
construction worker stops and gives us water young men

with Skynrd t-shirts in old green GMC pickup stop and give
us RCs and Fritos in Marion Momfeather Spirit Elder of

Cherokee holds Sarah's hands looks deep into her eyes
electricity lightning flies in and through the room as she

tells Sarah bout her past present and future Shadow
Walker guides us through sacred private Tribal lands

burial grounds Mantle Rock Mandy Falls Trail of Tears
I throw a rock and hit a rattlesnake on its head to show

Sarah how fast they are I apologize to the snake and
we hike on at end of journey Robin and Heidi my sister

and niece take us to Land Between the Lakes coyotes
elk buffalo bears wolves so many tales to tell and all

will be told tales of hiking western Kentucky the place
most beautiful the people most bold 19 days, 14 counties,

325 miles searching for people and places once lost
and forgotten guided by angels by holy spirit providence

the lost and forgotten we found and now remember

Ron Whitehead
may 18, 2005




- News, New & Of Note!  - Click Here for the latest happenings from our friends and family in the Poetry, Music and Art World! -

In the Spring of 1994 at The Kentucky Center for The Arts in Louisville His Holiness,The Dalai Lama, gave poet, Ron Whitehead, a message for him to share with young people of all ages thoughout the World. That message was the inspiration of the Ron Whitehead poem, "Never Give Up." - Click Here to Learn More about the story behind the inception of the Ron Whitehead poem, "Never Give Up!"

A True Tale of a Tall Trip. - Click Here To Read an Excerpt from the Sarah Elizabeth & Ron Whitehead book "Western Kentucky: Lost & Forgotten, Found & Remembered"

Click Here for more info on Sarah Elizabeth's latest CD!

Read Ron and Sarah Whitehead's experience at Hunter S. Thompson's Send-Off at Woody Creek - Click Here to Read!

Pix, Clips and Page from kindred Keepers of The Flame! Join us in celebrating the LifeArtSpirit of Allen Ginsberg! Click Here to Enter!

On Sunday, Feburary 20th, Writer, The Gonzo Journalist, Kentuckian and Friend, Hunter S. Thompson headed on from this world to the next. Click Here to read the emotes, reflects, rants and raves coming in to Insomniacathon On-Line!

Insom 04' Galleria!  - New & Expanded! -  Click Here to Enter! -

Click Here to read about The History of Insomniacathon.

Dave Amram Birthday Special! Click Here for VidClips, Pix and Debut Mp3's from  the new CD "The Long Road To Nowheresville!"

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