Listen: “Origin Stories”

Over two years ago, my mother died from lung cancer at sixty-one years old.
 
While she never smoked, she did grow up downwind from Rocky Flats, a major nuclear weapons complex which manufactured plutonium triggers from 1952-1989. Located fifteen miles northwest of Denver, this factory was responsible for leaking horrifying amounts of toxins into the air, water, and soil of the surrounding areas, including Wheatridge, Colorado where my mom grew up.
 

While I have participated in many forms of activist work and writing to spread awareness about the continued threat of this Superfund site, this audio piece honors the humanity and tenderness of the families impacted by such devastation. 

Billy Shaddox is a California-born songwriter living in the mountains of Colorado with several albums available for streaming online. April and Billy weave their work together in performances along the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains, and are fortunate enough to call the same ponderosa pine and elk-laden hillside their home. 

April Tierney’s first collection of poetry, Singing to the Bones, was published in 2018 by Fire Feeders Press; this is the title piece in her forthcoming collection, Origin Stories.

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