Dover Road
by Anne Britting Oleson

Up the hill from your farmhouse lies
a village which is no longer.
No post office, beams moldering
in cellar holes, general store
long closed, leaving windows
with panes falling out like
rotting teeth.  When the east wind
blows off the ocean, piano wires
hum in an abandoned house.

Down here the company falls silent
and draws close around the hearth.
Kitchen lights flicker on at nightfall.
I think I hear those echoes
as the snow falls on someone’s lost dream
of a town so long gone from the map
that no one alive remembers
when Dover Road was moved:
even this house has turned its back,
the green-fanned front door
gazing down the fields toward the bay.
The storm howls around us,
ghosts unable to find their way home.


Anne Britting Oleson is a writer supporting herself by teaching
high school English in the mountains of Central Maine.  She’s been
published in such journals as
The Valparaiso Poetry Review,
The Café Review, Cimarron Review, and many others; her
The Church of St. Materiana, was recently published
by Moon Pie Press.  In 2005, Oleson graduated from the
University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast MFA program, where
she met the four other writers with whom she founded Simply Not
Done, a women’s reading, writing and teaching collective.

On “Dover Road”:
Meadowbrook Farm is a colonial era saltwater farm on the
coast of Maine, where for the past several years the women
writers of Simply Not Done have met to read, write, discuss,
and commiserate.  The old house has sheltered dreams for
the better part of two centuries.  “Dover Road” is my hymn
to that house and the women who grace it every time I am

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Apple Valley Review:
A Journal of Contemporary

ISSN 1931-3888

Volume 4, Number 2
(Fall 2009)

Copyright © 2009
by Leah Browning, Editor.  

All future rights to material
published in the
Valley Review
are retained
by the individual authors
and artists.