I remember when hearty crimson and yellow colors, and those brilliant sharp orange hews, fell meekly into your deep valley. I felt secure, folded between the plump foothills of Appalachia, the wholesome Great Miami River, and glossy eyes of does dipping into the backdrop of corn fields and an azure sky. I hid inside the filaments of your Kelly green grass, rolled on your soft hills, took my time peeling the casings from walnuts, as I laid underneath the canopy of pine trees and birch leaves. Sometimes, I felt light, airy, as if in flight on the wings of your sparrows, clasped in the beaks of your mourning doves, but sometimes I felt suffocated by your smallness and the authority of your churches, stationed prominently in each part of town. I no longer live among you, not since 2010, after my civil ceremony with my now wife. It’s easier on my conscience to remember your topography rather than your religious values holding, in my view, significant dominion over civil rights mentalities.